Small town life is always insidious, the reality in Sicily is ever more so. Not only do you find everyone knows about everyone else’s business but they have been sticking in their noses for generations and so if you are a newcomer you will be a target for gossip.
I’ve been living here for a while now (more than ten years for those who don’t know) and there are still times when I feel like I am the eternal outsider. Recently I’ve been singled out by a question of local politics.
Anyone who knows me is probably smirking at the prospect of me being associated with any form of politicking, my life in politics is frugal at most, apart from being a bit of a lefty, the odd petition signing and greenie tendencies, I’m not the most politically motivated person around.
That’s why I was left aghast when my husband was told I was meddling in local politics by supporting and diffusing negative opinions about our current mayor on Facebook. Something that was suggested to be unsightly as my hubby has been given some small jobs by the current administration.
This was shocking to hear for many reasons, first someone obviously has way too much spare time to watch and plant feeds on Facebook and sit back to see who likes or shares them. Second, I’ve done no such thing. And finally the way it was said to my husband was rather threatening, like ‘shut your wife up or you can forget about getting any work contracts.’
I’m totally furious, as my husband refuses to tell me who approached him as I’d probably slap him in the face!
I considered ‘unfriending’ my Sicilian friends on Facebook to avoid any more insinuations. Then I thought, why should I when I have nothing to hide. I’ll just whine about it on my blog instead. I mostly have non Italian friends on FB anyhow.
You’ve go to hand it to these Sicilians who have turned the innocuous world of publicity drenched, data gathering FB into a source of political intrigue.
To be honest I’m generally indifferent to the current mayor and local politics in general. I still find it strange to see political rallies and house to house vote mongering at election time. I’m ignorant of the history of local politics which I think is simply about family feuds and competition any way. Every time my husband tries to explain about the different factions and the complexities of the world of Italian politics I tend to phase out.