Growing up in America, my household was, and still are, big football and baseball fans. I never watched soccer. I don’t think that I even ever thought about it before. The first time I traveled to Europe, I was 19yo. I remember being captivated with Italy. From the huge sunflowers we saw as we drove through Tuscany to the food, I was in love. I remember one of our days in Rome and we were sitting in one of the piazzas, just hanging out and people watching, when AS Roma won the game they were playing. It was amazing! All of these people flooded the streets and the vibe so intoxicating. On that same trip, I remember weeks later being London and it was soccer crazy everywhere and it was equally as awesome.
The second time I went to Italy, we were in Venice and it was a Sunday. Everyone else taken the boat back to Lido and three of us stayed. We wanted to just wander around the city and have an adventure. Oh it was just that! What we didn’t realize was that everything was closed at night on a Sunday in Venice. We managed, after getting extraordinarily lost, to find a bar that was open with a bunch of people from either Scotland, England or Ireland, watching soccer and drinking. We met them and I think we even drank some Guinness with them. We had to leave to catch the LAST ferry leaving to Lido and we almost didn’t make it. While walking back, two us had to go to the bathroom and weren’t going to make it. So we had to convince, in our most broken Italian, a doorman for some ritzy hotel to let us in so that we could use their bathroom. He did and made it back just in time to catch the last boat. Barely!
Then, I was married for two years to a Colombian guy and we watch A LOT of soccer!
The last time I was Italy, I don’t think I watched a lot of soccer. In fact the only soccer I can remember is that damn kid kicking his soccer ball against the wall in the piazza all day long!
I’m so happy that Orlando has a pro soccer team now. Even though I’m not in Orlando anymore, it will always be my home away from home. And let’s face it, this is one of the few things Orlando actually go right.
So in the spirit of the World Cup- GO TEAM ITALIA & GO TEAM USA!