We are, quite simply too tall for Italy. We have to dip our heads going up and down the stairs to our bedroom and bathroom. Clearance is less than 1.7 metres! (Until you get to the top of the stairs, when clearance is even lower jutting out over half the stairway.) Likewise, the staircase to the laundry has an even lower clearance. It’s hazardous negotiating the stairs at night, holding the laundry, trying to turn off the light, and remembering to duck. Once I forgot. Did I mention the stairs are concrete? Ouch.

Our apartment is described in airbnb as a torretta – the tower bit is actually the laundry, shared with two other apartments. But our bedroom is still in the roof-line  and it slopes down to the sides, quite low, with beams, even lower. I can sit up safely on the bed, but can’t stand straight up. Of course, the first day we hit our heads several times. Then I had a week or two free, then bashed my head on the beam the other day. I am being extra-cautious now. And I have to admit to a few close shaves too.

Okay, that’s our heads taken care of. Ouch again. But it doesn’t finish there – the stairs are steep and the steps are narrow, built for smaller feet than ours. We ascend (remembering to duck – mostly), with relative ease. We descend much more carefully, coming down sideways, because that’s the only way our feet fit. We descend as if we were children, leading with the same foot –  left foot down, right foot meets it, left foot down, right foot joins it, left foot down, etc.  

However, I don’t want to complain, because our next stop may be even worse.  


5 responses »

  1. How old is the building? I guess people were smaller a long time ago.

    Dh’s dad & aunts are all very tiny. I’m not sure if it’s genetics or their growth was stunted from malnutrition in the post-war years (FIL has said they sometimes didn’t have anything to eat except the chestnuts they could pick from the trees) or a bit of both. My mother — who is 5’2″ — says she likes being around them because they make her feel tall, lol.

    • Actually, the building isn’t very old. I do find that most Italians are very small, compared to us. Many women (and some men) don’t even come up to my shoulder!

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