-Where were you born?
In Johannesburg, South Africa.
-In which country and city are you living now?
I'm living in the small town of Bitritto in Italy.
-Are you living alone or with your family?
I am living with the lovely family that I am au-pairing for.
-How long have you been living in Italy?
I arrived on the 13th January, so have been here just over a month.
-What is your age?
I'm 22 years old.
-When did you come up with the idea of living in Italy?
I finished studying my Bachelor of Education at the end of 2008 and didn't feel that I was ready to "settle" down yet, that I need to do something different and explore a new place. Italy just seemed the right choice as I've always wanted to come here and experience the lifestyle, culture and explore the history of such a beautiful country.
-Was it hard to get a visa or a work permit?
Yes, it was quite difficult.
-Was it difficult for you to get medical insurance before you went there or when you first arrived?
My parents are expats living and working in Ghana in Africa, so we have International Medical Aid, so luckily I already had it.
-Do you speak Italian and do you think it's important to speak the local language?
I am learning to speak Italian, as I think it is very important. The town I am living in is very small, so there are a limited number of English-speaking people, so it has been crucial for me to speak and learn Italian. I understand a lot more than what I can actually say.
-Do you miss home and family sometimes? Describe your favorite recreational activities there or those that are available.
It is only natural to miss home and family and I do often. For me, the best thing to do when I'm homesick is to get out and do something, meet friends for coffee, go explore a new place, etc.
-Do you have other plans for the future?
I'm working with this family until November and then plan to travel around the parts of Italy I haven't been to and then Europe. I then want to head back to Cape Town (where I had been living before coming here) and find a job as a teacher. I would definitely like to come bck to Italy in the future.
-What about housing, have you bought, or are you renting a home? How much do you pay for it?
I am living with the family I work for, so housing was already organised for me.
-What do you think about the Italians?
The locals have been very friendly and accommodating towards me and helping me wherever possible to fit in and learn about their culture.
-What are the positive and negative aspects of living in Italy?
The posiive aspects of course include the food, the wine, the incredible places to visit and see, the people and the culture.
-Do you have any tips for our readers about living in Italy?
I would definitely suggest learning some Italian before you move to Italy, as it just helps you meet people and adapt a whole lot easier.