There are very strict hospitality rules in Italy and a lot of them conflict with southern rules. Here are my favorites.
If you are a guest in Italy, you are not allowed to help. At all. Sit down. What are you doing?
If you’re a guest in the south, you’re expected to ask to help and expected to insist and help anyway when your help is declined. “No, we don’t need any help,” means, “Why are you still sitting down? Hand me that plate this minute.”
If you’re the host of guests in Italy, you wait on every single person and spit in the food of the people you dislike. Unless you’re a man, then you sit and let your wife do the work while you eat and get drunk with everybody.
If you’re the host of guests in the south, you wait on every single person and smile at the people you dislike. If you’re a man, you’re in charge of keeping everybody drunk and laughing. If you’re a woman, you’re in charge of keeping everybody out of the kitchen except other women and men who know what the fuck they’re doing.
If you don’t speak the language in Italy, you’re expected to at least try or else let somebody translate. Usually hand movements will help you figure out what people are saying. [waving] “Ah, yes! Hello! Ciao! I know that one!”
If you don’t speak the language in the south, do expect a lot of shouting and waving arms from people trying to find out where you’re from and what you’re doing here and how long you’re staying. “WELCOME. TO. AMERICA. AH-MARE-EEEE-CAAAA.”
If you want to thank your host for having you in Italy, you eat everything they give you until you can’t anymore, and then you say thank you and talk about how amazing the food was.
If you want to thank your host for having you in the south, you give them Tupperware.
We know you’re all dying to have some certain questions answered, such as:
What are all the other hospital staff like?
Are there any romances going on between staff members, like Gilbert and Elizabeta, or maybe Matthew and Lars?
Who’s the director of this fine hospital, and what is this hospital called for that matter?
Well Tino and I are here to answer those questions for you! Being part of the front desk administration lets you in on all the ins and outs of the hospital social life, and we’re probably the best to ask!
Because there’s probably nothing else you’re curious about at all.