1. You no longer can eat salty food for breakfast, and if you do you definitely can’t mix it with something sweet.
2. You scoff at people who drink cappuccinos after 11am.
3. You say “Aye-yah!” when you get hurt instead of “Ouch” or “Ow-ah!”
4. You realize you’ve started staring at people much more, but don’t think it’s as rude as you once did.
5. You cross the street whenever a car isn’t coming — to hell with the little red person on the traffic light.
6. Similarly, you’re less scared not to follow road laws, and drive much more — ahem — ‘freely’ than you once did.
7. You can slip sarcasm or double-meanings into any conversation, no matter what the topic.
8. You begin English sentences with “Allora” and do things like “taking” a dish or “doing” a shower.
9. You use your hands during every conversation, sometimes responding to English friends with a gesture that fully explains your point, but that they’re likely not to understand.
10. You don’t think twice about paying for water, and you never expect ice.
11. You wear long pants even when it’s over 75˚ Fahrenheit.
12. Your go-to small talk is about upcoming or recently-had vacations.
13. You firmly believe in the dangers of cold air on your throat and happily take a digestive shot after dinner.
14. You become fiercely proud of the town you’re “from” (or living in) and know the waiters, baristas, and mammas throughout.
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Gina Mussio is a Columbus, Ohio native but lives in Monza, Italy. There she writes, teaches English and resolutely searches for the best pizzeria in town. Talk to her more at @ginamussio.