Lesson #7: If You’re Not Careful, You’ll Die

If you read my last post about Lorenzo getting sick in Sardinia then you have an idea what might be coming next. In the comment section Christine and Kenan both went on to mention their respective experiences with Europeans who think that if you go outside with wet hair, you’ll catch a cold.

Welcome to my life.

This cultural phenomenon began rearing its little head slowly at first with small comments; such as Lorenzo saying that he didn’t want to sleep without a t-shirt on because he would wake up with a sore throat. I laughed and made fun of him thinking that he must be kidding. Almost every guy I know back in the States sleeps without a t-shirt in the summer every single night. And maybe even in the winter if they’re brave enough.

I mean, you can’t literally go to sleep completely fine and wake up sick as a dog, can you?

The second trigger was when my TEFL classmates and I decided that as part of our final assignment we would create a cultural project pointing fun at all the major difference between Italian and American men. Most of the things that we came up with can be used for material in these posts and as I read them off to Lorenzo he had a response or reason for every single one. I read something along the lines of not only does every last Italian man wear a scarve, they are generally purple or color coordinated to said man’s outfit.

Photo by smittenkittenorig

Lorenzo’s response: but my throat gets cold, and if I don’t cover it I’ll get sick.

If I mention a slight scratch in my throat or a sore tonsil his response it, be sure you tie your scarf tight tomorrow!

As others living with Europeans can surely attest to, it doesn’t stop there.

After a nice, relaxing shower I love nothing more than to crawl into bed. I consider it not only time for my body to rest and relax but for my hair to settle into its natural state and repair itself without the harsh blasts of a blow dryer. Then I hear; aren’t you going to dry your hair? You need to dry your hair before you go to sleep. You’re going to get sick.

Well, after almost 24 years I think I can confidently say that going to bed with wet hair and sleeping without a t-shirt (for whatever reason) will not result in your immediate death and most likely will not result in your catching of the flu the following morning unless you have some sneaky little bacteria already lurking around in your throat. Do you agree?

What strange or humorous health concerns have you found as you cross cultures?

If you like this section, check out my other lessons on living with an Italian. Do you have some quirky cultural difference of your own to share? I’d love to feature them!