I don't get it...
Every day this week as I've walked around town strangers (tourists) have thrust their cameras into my hands and asked me to take their picture. In a variety of languages.
Strange behavior in this world of mistrust and suspicion. Handing over valuable cameras or iPhones to a complete stranger anywhere seems to be questionable behavior; to do it in places where you have been warned to watch for pickpockets and thieves seems to be courting disaster.
Just as strange was the grandfather at the park who trusted me with his 9 month old granddaughter while he was busy with his older grandson. Italian grandparents don't even trust the parents of their grandchildren, much less a foreigner they have never formally met. Really, if they don't trust their own children with those precious ones why would they trust me?
All I can figure out is that I appear harmless and safe, the kind of person your grandmother would approve of. I bet I could apply for a job at Disney and be cast as a Princess immediately, based on my totally trustworthy appearance. Of course I'd rather be Tinkerbell because she may look all cute and cuddly, but she's mischievous and cunning and just the right amount of trouble. I could totally pull that off if people would just stop handing me cameras.
In other news I spotted my first Italian sunbather today. It's fine with me if he wants to lie in the sun...my issue is when he felt the need to strut along the edge of the river, hands on hips, wearing nothing but a speedo and a cigarette dangling sexily from one corner of his mouth. I imagine he was thinking of how lucky all the women passing by felt to see him standing there; so close, yet so far away. Not far enough away in my opinion, but I'm sure he would just say that as a newly married woman I can't appreciate him properly.