Ispirazione: The Italian Midday from Calabria

Buongiorno a tutti! Today for the Ispirazione Series let’s welcome Emanuela Aliberti on Italophilia!

Emanuela is from Calabria in the South of Italy and loves writing and exploring about her country. She studied Journalism and Languages and started the Italian Midday as a way to get people understand the Italian language and culture. Let’s know more about it from her.


How did Italian Midday start?

Well, it started as a love for language. Since I was very young, I have been fond of writing. Even now, I love looking for new words and discovering their origins. First of all, The Italian Midday is a connection to my deeper passions. Secondly it is the means by which I can show the beauty of Southern Italy. I live in Calabria, the toe of the boot, a fabulous land with a rich linguistic history. It is off the beaten track, but it hides a lot of natural and artistic treasures.

The term Mezzogiorno, literally midday in English, indicates the South of Italy, including Sicily.

The Italian Midday is a wordplay that shows not only the geographic location but also the soul of traditional Southern culture made by sun, food, and conviviality. And last but not least, The Italian midday is my way to get to know and help people to understand Italian language and culture.

How is Calabria different from the rest of Italy in terms of language?

One of the most defining feature of Italian language is its variety of dialects. Calabria is no exception. Here you can find a lot of dialects and they differ a lot from north to south. In northern Calabria the dialects are influenced by Latin but in the southern-most parts of the region, Greek has left a strong imprint.

Dialects are often used in spoken language so it could happen that you know Italian but can’t understand a word listening to people speaking in the streets. Don’t worry. Not even people from other regions can understand it and if you speak with somebody you can be certain that they will try to understand and help you in any way possible.

Very interesting….Can you list 10-12 important Italian words for an everyday traveler??

What are the most important words to know when travellin in Italy? It’s very hard to choose just some words but if you want a smart language kit to enjoy your travel in Italy, you need to learn words in their context.

For example, when you are travelling, you must know the word “biglietto”, which means ticket. You will ask for “un biglietto” to buy, and the ticket inspector will ask you “biglietto” to check. Needless to say, you must know “l’indirizzo”, the address where you are going.

A very important word in Italy is “bar”. Even if you know this word, you probably don’t know the meaning that it really has in Italy.

“Bar” is neither a long piece of metal nor an alcohol based shop but it is a meeting place where you can have breakfast or buy a snack and, above all, drink coffee. You can find a “bar” at almost every corner of a street.

Talking about drinking or eating, when you are in a bar or in a restaurant, you need to say to the waiter “vorrei ordinare” (I’d like to order) and at the end “il conto” (the bill).

If you are looking for accommodation, you should know the difference between “pensione completa” and “mezza pensione”. Pensione completa means full board: breakfast, lunch and evening meals are included in the price. Mezza pensione means half board: in this case, breakfast and one meal chosen between lunch or dinner are included. You can also book just a room: “una camera”.

Italy has an immense artistic heritage so wherever you are don’t forget to ask for “una guida” who will take you to visit the most important places and monuments. And if you need some help, ask “aiuto”.

I agree…What tips would you give to readers who are learning Italian?

I reckon that when you are learning a language you need a method. All you need is: list the particular objectives you want to achieve, choose one activity that will help you meet your goal list, select the material you need and plan every day.

In this guide , I tried to define a method to learn Italian step by step. Feel free to download it. It’s totally free. And if you are interested in being part of a study group, join Italian Digital Learners facebook group. I’m waiting for you!

I want to conclude this writing with a big thank you to Ishita. I love Italophilia and I’m honoured to be part of the Inspiration stories. A presto! 😊


Grazie per la tua inspirazione!

Related Reading:

Ispirazione: Yoga Retreat in Liguria

Ispirazione: Sketching Tours in Rome

10 thoughts on “Ispirazione: The Italian Midday from Calabria

    1. Hi Karen, I read your book. It’s brilliant! You describes the real Calabria, lights and shadows of this region. I would be very happy to meet you next time you come in Palmi. Let me know.

      1. Hi Emanuela, I just clicked on this post again, forgetting I had already read it (lol) – just as enjoyable the second time and saw your comment. Glad you enjoyed my book. Perhaps we can get together this coming spring when I’ll be in Calabria. Until then, buon lavoro!

  1. Glad to be part of your “Ispirazione series”, Ishita! Your blog offers lots of interesting stories and you are so good at telling the life and soul of Italy. Grazie a te!

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