love in Sicily

Amore in Italy: How long should the chase last?

Originally published in Thought Catalogue in 2013


The age old human tradition of man chasing woman is rooted in the caveman period.  Nowadays in Ireland and other modern societies it is quite common and acceptable for the girl to do just as much of the shovel work as the former pursuer might.  How much pursuing is too much and when do you say “enough” [screw this] and move on to another?

As I live in Sicily, weeks and even months of pursuing is normal, if a little outdated.  A girl may indicate interest in the usual conscious and unconscious ways such as flirty comments or huge eyes watching your every move.  Then if the man wants to continue this charade he must pursue and must be prepared for a mammoth struggle.

Ci frequentiamo?

A decision to couple up is not taken lightly on this repressed, socially peculiar island, so the female especially will take great joy in the elongating of the pre-courtship period, one which may prove endless.

Once you’ve exchanged numbers and then later messages, you’ll expect to meet up.  If nothing transpires in the first meeting it may not mean that all hope of a hook up is doomed, it merely means that she enjoys time being spent on her (what girl doesn’t).  She may keep you abreast of her intentions by calling and/or messaging you the next day to meet again.

Ti voglio tanto bene, sai?

On the next meeting again nothing may happen and man’s worst enemy, frustration, will lift its sordid head.  The fine line now appears: if another meeting passes without some progression then the guy may look elsewhere, or he may patiently await one final meeting.

This charade is seldom played out in the modern world of open minded, socially adroit people for long.  The man must be given the right obvious signals and when I say obvious I mean blatant.  The girl must then receive the right advances, consistent and courteous.

Amore… se lo facciamo di nuovo?

If you meet someone that revels in the chase and gives no sign of progression then why not procure an ice cream and drive their nose into it forcibly, as you will have just wasted some valuable days of your finite life.  Forget it, move on, and pursue a modern thinking, socially open, worthy object of your desires. They’re waiting for you.

Dimmi quando verrai



John P Brady writes short and long fiction, articles and formally a blog about life in Italy, where he lived for 6 years.  His first book, a collection, entitled Back to the Gaff has been published by Roadside Fiction. 

Follow John on social media: Facebook Twitter Instagram

Back to the Gaff

#backtothegaffScandalous Narratives of Contemporary Ireland

Back to the Gaff is a collection by author John P Brady, which describes the excessive and outrageous nature of Irish night life.

Meet an array of eccentric individuals who populate the bars of Dublin, living lives of decadence and abandon. Their frolics inevitably lead to a trip ‘back to the gaff,’ which in Dublin-speak means gravitating towards someone’s place of residence where the depravity continues.


Ebook and Paperback available


Responses to Amore in Italy: How long should the chase last?

  1.  September 11 2013
    Marje I love this! WOW – is that really how it works for men in Sicily? I was witnessing from the other side of the coin last month and as a reasonably attractive 44 year old I found my suitor to be like the proverbial “rat up a drainpipe” in his approach to courtship. I love your writing and find it hard to believe that any lady isn’t won over by your witticism! xxxx
    •  September 11 2013
      JohnPBrady “rat up a drainpipe”Ha ha very good, Marje! I know just the type. It’s not all bad news but lots of the time it’s like I stated (somewhat sarcastically).
  2.  September 11 2013
    kate Not going well at the moment, then? Sounds like beers are in order. Just been talking about you with Marco-hope your ears were burning! PS I’ve just translocated and we’re now practically neighbours. There will probably be a housewarming party. Will keep you posted and will try to invite only modern, forward-thinking single girls for you. ;-)
    •  September 11 2013
      JohnPBrady You forgot to mention socially adroit!! Actually this was written a few months ago…those were different times indeed!
  3.  September 12 2013
    Orla McAlinden Any woman will tell you that there is NO WAY that good ice cream should be wasted in this fashion! It’s like suggesting that chocolate should be shoved up the offending nose, a waste that is tantamount to a crime and is certainly a sin.
    •  September 13 2013
      JohnPBrady Indeed I forgot women’s special relationship with gelato, and all sweet things. Have you any alternative solution

Pin It on Pinterest