Whilst scoffing mango and strawberries with my nephew the other day, I found myself thinking of my friends in Sicily with pity. This is the season when they have pretty much no fruit, you see. Oranges fizzle out in February, and then there’s basically nothing till May. Fruit and veg in season The idea of only … More Do you only eat fruit in season, or forced in greenhouses?
I recently moved back to England, partly because I found my dream job, my life’s calling; and equally so that my son could go to school in peace after his school in Sicily fell down. Now that I am back in England I am realising that the level of pity and sympathy for refugees is … More Why are these refugees coming to Europe anyway?
I had to collect my son from school early on Wednesday of the week before last, because the school fell down. It sounds like the punchline to a cheesy joke, or some schoolboy’s fantasy, but here in the dump of a Sicilian town where I live, it has happened to three other schools already and … More Held to Ransom by the Maternal Mafia
I was chatting on Facebook with a fellow Expat in Sicily recently about how to make children do their homework. I actually don’t think it IS always a good idea. Children need time for hobbies and a social life When my son began school, I used all means possible to make him do his homework, … More Why I am teaching my son to break the rules
I’ve seen a lot of nonsense talked about the refugee crisis in Europe. This uses Italy as an example but applies to all of Europe. Take a look at some FACTS! How many immigrants are currently being processed in Italy? Right now there are 93,608 migrants in the Italian system awaiting processing, some housed in … More The Italian Refugee Crisis in Numbers
The history books about Sicily have little to say about the time of the Spanish rule. I find this strange, because the Spanish changed Sicily more than any other conqueror. The way they wanted this island is the way it still is: the Sicilians just cannot seem to shake them off. Some history books … More A Time to Die – the Spanish Inquisition in Sicily
This is the first article in a Friday series about the refugee crisis facing Europe. Here in Sicily, we get no choice over the refugees we take in. In these hot, dusty border countries where the EU looks out upon that scary place known as The Third World, we fish them out of the sea and take … More EU countries are “Refugee Shopping” to pick the refugees they want
What effect are all the African migrants having on Sicily these days? Three documentary makers and a great many blog readers have asked me about African immigrants in Sicily, and about “cultural fusion”. Until now I had seen literally no sign of any impact at all; it was as if they were all invisible. One … More What are these Africans doing in Sicily?
After my bleak presentation of the immigration issue facing Sicily, I am really excited to find and share this initiative to welcome and help new immigrants integrate into Sicilian society. Sicilian Donkey: Sicilian Street Food Tambah Jenneh, 18, is a migrant from Gambia now working at 11eleven in Catania (c) Sean Neil / Al Jazeera … More How Sicilians Are Helping Young Migrants Arriving On Their Island
I keep getting queries from people scared to come on holiday to Sicily, worried that the island is so packed with immigrants they’ll hardly be able to move. If immigration into Italy continues as the current rate of 1,000 immigrants per day (it’s actually been more than that for the last couple of weeks) then, … More Sicily’s Immigration Crisis: Why we need Boots on the Ground in Africa
Here’s a photo of a road in Sicily which collapsed just ten days after it was built. It’s near Mezzojuso, 25 miles from Palermo. It cost more than Euros 200 million – at least, that’s what the taxpayer forked out for it. The actual materials and work, no doubt, cost far less. I don’t know if … More Schools and Bridges Collapsing in Sicily: Thanks Mafia!
Delicious juicy oranges and succulent lemons are one of the first things that spring to mind when most people think of Sicily. The other, unfortunately, is the Mafia, but few outsiders realise how closely they are connected. Citrus fruit trees were brought to Sicily by the Muslim invaders from North Africa in the 11th century … More Sour, Corrupt and dominated by the Mafia: The Citrus Industry in Sicily
Did you know the EU has given several billion Euros to the Sicilian Mafia over the last few years? Did you know the EU gives billions of Euros every year to keep corrupt Sicilian politicians in power? Did you know it systematically destroys enterprise and commerce? Read on to find out how. Have you ever … More Dear EU Taxpayer, did you know you are funding the Mafia?
British Prime Minister David Cameron was on TV recently, telling the EU they cannot have the extra 1.7 billion pounds they are asking Britain to donate by 1st December this year. Whilst he didn’t exactly give them the hand-bagging Margaret Thatcher would have, he did seem very cheesed off indeed. Nigel Farage of the UK … More Dear EU tax payer, how does the Renato Guttuso Museum spend YOUR money?