Off-season at the Lake

December 1, 2014 / Local Interest
Lake Bracciano, Lazio

braccianowinter2Niente (nothing). Certainly not busy. Not too warm either. Already so much less of a zoo in the summertime than the beach at the sea… now off-season it’s even less so. Not fancy… I mean, broccolo romanesco and cheap wine? Even the restaurant patrons are relatively quiet rather than hollering across the table at each other!

People watching? Not enough of those, so nope, not really. A few geese…?

Sailing? Nuh-uh, no wind on sunny fall/winter days.

Shop at the local product street stalls? Yeah, come April maybe.

So why go to one of the lakes north of Rome at this time of year?

Maybe because at times life in the city is so busy, overwhelming, exciting and chaotic, so “Rome” in a word, the possibility to enjoy a day where everything including the light is muted, toned down and quiet becomes one of the nicer luxuries that you can give yourself.

braccianowinter1You’ll even find people like this chap who come out to eat at the lake alone. Let me repeat myself, “eat alone” …IN ITALY!! (Solitude in Italy is basically considered to be a pathology, on par with psychological disorders or degenerative diseases.) But no questioning stares or heartfelt concern towards him at this time of year. There is a tacit understanding among off-season-going lake folk that for these few hours everyone here is doing the (occasionally) most important and satisfying thing possible: niente.


by GB Bernardini

Editor, Italian Notebook

8 Responses to “Off-season at the Lake”

  1. aase Schoen

    Very well written GB, makes me long for a quiet walk along the beach and look at the beautiful swans.

  2. I regularly read articles in Italian Note book but i have to mention that your comments about solo travelers is unacceptable. Thousands of travelers CHOSE to travel solo and your comments suggest we should eat at mcdonalds or in our hotel rooms. wake up

    • I don’t think the author was making a negative comment about solo travellers at all, but saying that Italians find solo travellers puzzling as they are a very group and family oriented people. I have travelled solo several times in Italy, and have always been met with courtesy and kindness.

  3. Ah, GB. Love that place! And I (almost) feel like I’m there… and very happy! And, Lee, I’m sure no diss on solo travelers is intended. Just a commentary that it’s not very common in some places. As a solo traveler myself, I do find that people often think we’re brave or crazy, or usually a bit of both. But welcoming, nonetheless. Especially in a wonderful place like this!


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