My Grandpa Mario was from Zoldo Alto, Italy.  When I was little, I heard the story of how he came to America on “the boat.”  I remember thinking, “Wow, how lucky for him that he got on that one boat out of Zoldo Alto!”

Growing up Italian was great.  Because of my experiences, and the fact that there are SO many of us here in the local area, I can always spot my fellow paesanos by one or more of these Top 10 Signs That You Were Raised in an Italian Family:

  1. You talk with your hands – a lot
  2. Your Grandma/Grandpa was an amazing cook
  3. You know the difference between sauce and gravy
  4. You were disciplined with a wooden spoon
  5. You know how to pronounce cannoli (kah-NAW-lee)
  6. There’s no such thing as a quick goodbye
  7. You are related to a Tony, Vinny, Paulie, or Vito
  8. You are very affectionate
  9. You respect your elders
  10. You cook for 50 when only 10 are coming for supper

I’m proud of my Italian heritage.  I find myself continuing the traditions with my own family (except for the wooden spoon thing.  I decided to keep the spoons in the utensil drawer).  So, after supper is over and the cannolis are enjoyed, I pack up leftover pasta with sauce for my Uncle Paulie and the others, and start hugging and kissing for the hour-long goodbye.

I’m happy that my Grandpa Mario got on “the boat.”  Famiglia per sempre!

What are some of the other signs you can think of?

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