Living in Italy as a non-EU citizen over the long term takes serious tenacity – or, as the natives call it, grinta, a wonderful word meaning something akin to “grit,” “scrappiness,” or “moxie.” To make it work over the years, I’ve held (or interviewed for) a number of positions that have since become scraps on my CV’s cutting room floor, but I think they help paint a fuller picture of my story and pluck. The latter serves me well in my journalistic endeavors.
Some memorable gigs:
~Street sales (sandwich-board style) of discounted Vatican Museums tours, entirely on commission
~Au pairing for the son of a party-switching politician
~Managing social media for an online store selling books and DVDs for welders
~Answering a 24-hour global crisis hotline for a luxury tour operator (typical crises: “We overslept for our 8am tour after yesterday’s wine tasting”; “I’m in Beijing and calling you to figure out what intersection I’m facing”)
~Teaching English to an 8-year-old pupil who regularly took a knife to his workbook