Every culture does things differently. It’s a fact.
Hey, even from family to family, customs and practices can vary widely. So, it’s actually no surprise at all that I found myself a little confused from time to time. There are many things that work the same between the USA and Italy, but then there are many things that don’t. I will help you navigate some of these cultural differences through what I hope will become a fun little series of survival tips.
I thought long and hard about the very first survival tip that I should offer to you. Would it be key Italian phrases? Navigating the complicated social codes? Fashion? Table manners? Geography? No, in the end, I decided that there was one thing that everyone should know before going to Italy.
And it’s towels.
You see, in the US, we normally find three sizes of towel in a typical bathroom.
Going in ascending order, the smallest towel is the hand towel. It’s for drying your hands after you wash them or even your face. The next largest towel is the bath towel and the largest is the bath sheet. The difference between the bath towel and the bath sheet, you ask. I have no idea. All I know is that the bath sheet is really large and the bath towel is not as large.
You may be wondering why I’m going over the towels so carefully. Well, if you ever find yourself in an Italian house, this information may be very precious to you. The function of the towels are markedly different in Italy. Let me demonstrate with an image:
You see!!! The smallest towel is not, in fact, a hand towel. It’s the BUTT towel! It’s for after using the bidet to wash your nether regions. You most definitely do not dry your hands on this towel and certainly not your face either. Luckily, it usually hangs over or near the bidet.
However, that is not ALWAYS the case. Occasionally, you’ll find it near or amongst the other towels. It may look innocent, but it’s not. It’s a dangerous little towel, so watch out.
Regarding the other towels, the medium sized towel is the hand towel which you would use to dry your hands. The giant towel is for after a shower. Those aren’t too complicated and if you mix them up, it’s not too big of a deal.
Hopefully this bit of information was useful to you. Thanks for reading!
A presto! See you soon!