Italian Mafia Order Ambulances to Stop Sirens, As Members Mistake Them for Police

Mafia members in the Italian city of Naples have reportedly threatened ambulance crews to stop using sirens as, the noise is too similar to that of police sirens, and interferes with “business”.

Ambulance drivers and first responders in Naples have recently started asking for police escorts, after numerous reports of armed mafia crews threatening and even assaulting ambulances, over their use of sirens and light signals. Apparently, these emergency signals used by ambulances are very bad for business, as they disturb drug-pushers and scare away customers, both of which often mistake them for police. Such cases have been reported for years, but the problems has intensified recently, due to the Covid-19 crisis.

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Threads of God – The World’s Rarest Pasta Is Also One of the Most Difficult to Make

The small town of Nuoro, on Italy’s Sardinia island, is home to what many are calling the world’s rarest pasta, an intricate, hand-made treat that only a handful of people can make.

Known as su filindeu (in Sardinia’s Sardo dialect), or Fili di Dio (in Italian), and translated as threads of God, this traditional pasta had been linked to La Festa di San Francesco, an ancient religious ritual celebrated every year, in May. For the past two hundred years, the only way to try threads of god pasta was to complete a 33km pilgrimage on foot or horseback from Nuoro to the village of Lula. But because this sacred dish is in serious danger of becoming extinct, the only three women in the world who know how to make it, have been trying to save it by making it more accessible.

67-year-old named Paola Abraini picked up the skills to make threads of god pasta from her mother, who also learned them from her mother, and so on for many generations. However, only one of her two daughters knows the basic technique, but lacks the passion and the patience necessary to carry on the family tradition. The only other two women who she managed to pass on her knowledge to – Abraini’s niece and her sister-in-law – don’t have any daughters to pass the secrets to, so su filindeu is in grave danger of vanishing.

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Hundreds of Birds Mysteriously Drop Dead During New Year’s Eve Celebration

Photos and videos showing scores of dead birds on the streets of Rome following the recent New Year’s Eve celebration have been doing the rounds online, fueling all sorts of conspiracy theories.

Hundreds of dead birds were found lying around the Termini train station, in Rome, Italy, on New Year’s Eve, and although the exact cause of this tragedy remains a mystery, animal groups have blamed the traditional fireworks show. The Italian capital had announced a fireworks ban ahead of New Year’s Eve, but it was largely ignored. The Italian branch of OIPA (International Animal Protection Organization) has called for a nationwide ban on selling fireworks and firecrackers for personal use, following this sad incident.

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Man Goes For Walk After Argument With Wife, Doesn’t Stop for 420 Kilometers

An Italian man who went for a walk to cool off after getting into an argument with his wife was found 420 kilometers from his home, after walking for a whole week.

The 48-year-old man from Como, a city north of Milan, in Italy, reportedly got into a heated argument with his wife one day, late last month, and stormed out of the house to go for a walk and clear his head. Nothing out of the ordinary about that, only the protagonist of our story never actually stopped walking. He was only stopped a week later, by a police patrol car in Gimarra, on the Adriatic coast, 418 kilometers away from his home town.

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Bosco Verticale – Living in a Vertical Forest in the Middle of an Urban Jungle

Bosco Vericale is a unique residential complex in the center of Milan, Italy. It consists of two towers that stand 80 and 112 meters high and are covered in plants and trees giving them the look that inspired their name – vertical forest.

Designed by a team of architects at Boeri Studio, Bosco Verticale was designed as a “home for trees that also houses humans and birds”. It was inaugurated in October 2014, in Milan’s Porta Nuova Isola area, as part of a wider renovation project. The two towers are home to a total of 800 trees (480 first and second stage trees, 300 smaller ones), 15,000 perennials and/or ground covering plants and 5,000 shrubs. That amounts to 30,000 square meters of woodland and undergrowth, concentrated on 3,000 square meters of urban surface. And the vegetation is not just for show, it serves a purpose that the residents themselves acknowledge.

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Woman Tries to Get Colleague Fired by Spiking Her Coffee With Sedatives

An Italian woman was recently sentenced to four years in jail after she admitted to spiking a work colleague’s drink with sedatives, so she would underperform.

This disturbing story of work rivalry taken to the extreme dates back to October 6th of 2017, when Mariangela Cerrato brought a round of coffees for her colleagues at an office in Bra, a town in Italy’s Piedmont region. She brought the coffees and cappuccinos from a nearby bar, as she usually did, so no one suspected anything shady. However, after downing her cappuccino in one gulp, one of Cerrato’s colleagues, Alice Bordon, started feeling dizzy and lost her balance walking to her desk. She was taken to the hospital where doctors checked for a potential stroke, not knowing that something more insidious was at play…

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Italy’s Kiwi Plants Are Dying And No One Can Figure Out Why

Italy is the world’s second largest kiwi producer after China, but for the past eight years farmers have been battling a mysterious enemy that has so far killed over twenty percent of the country’s kiwi plants.

It starts with the leaves. They wither and face downwards, and within 10 days they all fall to the ground, leaving the kiwi fruits exposed to direct sunlight. Underground, the roots of the vine darken and begin to rot. In a year or two, the whole plant withers and dies. There is no known cure, and by the time farmers start noticing the symptoms described above, it is already much too late to do anything about it.  The farmers call it morìa, or “die-off”, and it had devastated plantations where kiwi vines have thrived for decades.

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Italian Parents Not Obligated to Financially Support Adult Child, Supreme Court Rules

In a landmark ruling that will act as precedent for similar trials in the future, the Italian Supreme Court ruled against the appeal of a 35-year-old man who still expected financial assistance from his parents.

The historic sentence marked the end of a five-year case in which an adult part-time music teacher who earned an annual income of 20,000 euros (about $24,000) claimed financial assistance from his parents. In an initial ruling, a Tuscany judge actually awarded him a monthly allowance of 300 euros ($360) from his parents, a decision that was later overturned by an appeal court, and last week by Italy’s Supreme Court. Judges ruled that the 35-year-old’s parents financial support cannot be expected to continue indefinitely.

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Italian Man Fined $200 Because His Rooster Crows Too Early in the Morning

An 83-year-old man was ordered to pay a 166 euro fine after he failed to prevent his pet rooster from crowing at 4:30 in the morning, which some of his neighbors had complained about.

Angelo Boletti, a pensioner from the Italian town of Castiraga Vidardo, in Lombardy, was found to have violated local rules, which state that pets must be kept at a minimum distance of 10 metres from neighboring homes. But the real problem was that the pet in question, a rooster named Carlino, crowed loudly as early as 4:30 in the morning and waking up the neighbors. After receiving several complaints about the bird’s morning routine, police started monitoring Carlino, and after confirming his early crowing decided to fine the retired bricklayer.

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Italian Police Find Drugs Hidden Inside Coffee Beans

Drug dealers are always looking for ingenious ways to get their products past checkpoints, and sometimes they exhibit some truly outside-the-box thinking.

The attention of Italian customs officers at Malpensa Airport was recently drawn by a small package from Colombia to a man named Santino D’Antonio. If you’re not an action flick buff, that name most likely means nothing to you, but if you’re a fan of John Wick movies starring Keanu Reeves, you probably recognize it as the name of the mafia boss and main antagonist in John Wick 2. Luckily, the officers recognized the name, and decided to inspect the package more thoroughly…

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We’ll Be Back! Inmates Escape Prison, Leave Note Promising to Return in Two Weeks

Italian media reported the strange case of two inmates who managed to escape from Rebibbia prison and left behind a letter explaining their reason for escaping and promising to be back soon.

On the night of June 2nd, Davad Zukanovic, 40 and Lil Ahmetovic, 46, two cousins serving time at Rome’s Rebibbia prison, managed to escape by cutting through the bars on their prison cell window, rappelling down into the courtyard on a fire hydrant water hose and climbing over the outer walls by climbing the barbed wire with a wire cutter. This alone was a feat worthy of a Hollywood movie, but what really made their escape stand out was the note they left in their prison cell, explaining that they had an urgent family problem to take care of and promising to be back in 15 days.

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Cascate del Mulino – Tuscany’s Stunning Limestone Pools

Among the rolling hills and vineyards of the Tuscan countryside lies one of the most stunning tourist attractions not only in Italy, but in the entire world – a cascade of white limestone pools overflowing with warm, turquoise water known as Cascate del Mulino.

Translated as “Waterfalls of the Mill” in Italian, this surreal-looking natural wonder is located on the grounds of an old mill, just a few kilometers outside of the village of Saturnia. Since the time of the Roman empire, people have been coming here to have various ailments cured by the special water of the underground springs in the area, which is rich in sulfur and other minerals. But nowadays, Cascate del Mulino has become a popular destination for tourists and Instagram travel influencers, offering both stunning views of the surrounding Tuscan countryside and attention-grabbing social media pics.

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Italian Company Proposes Plexiglas Beach Cubicles for Pandemic Summer Fun

Summer at the beach doesn’t sound that enticing this year due to the threat of Covid-19 and social distancing measures, but one Italian company has conceptualized a solution and it involves Plexiglas beach cubicles.

Having to pass on the summer vacation season entirely would be catastrophic for Italy’s massive tourism sector, but  Modena-based Nuova Neon recently unveiled a type of transparent Plexiglas cubicles that could be set up on beaches to ensure that people can enjoy some time in the sun while still maintaining a safe distance from each other. These large  transparent boxes are designed to delimit the bathers’ spaces; they surround individual groups of people thus avoiding interactions with other vacationers.

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Italian Town Bans Use of Google Maps After Too Many Tourists Stranded Because of It

Baunei, an idyllic mountain village on the Italian island of Sardinia, has launched an appeal to visitors asking them to stop relying on the directions of Google Maps when driving around the area.

Salvatore Corrias, the mayor of Baunei, claims that in the last year alone the local fire service or mountain rescue team have been called 144 times to help stranded tourists who had followed the directions of Google Maps. Apparently, people are often using the GPS-powered app to reach so-called “hidden beaches” around Baunei and end up driving down lanes that are unsuitable for cars or onto off-road tracks. To stop this from happening, local police have put up signs that read “Do not follow the directions suggested by Google Maps”.

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Italian Winemakers Set Vineyards Ablaze to Keep Them from Freezing

Breathtaking photos of vineyards in northern Italy lit up at night by hundreds of torches have been doing the rounds online for the past week. As temperatures unexpectedly dropped below zero last week, winemakers had to come up with a way to keep the vineyards from freezing, and fire was apparently their best choice.

Farmers usually do their best to keep fire away from their grape vines, but with temperatures expected to reach a freezing -9 degrees C, winemakers had no choice hundreds of torches spread out over several hectares to keep the vineyards from freezing. This technique has long been used by winemakers all over the world to create air movement, which prevents frost pockets from forming. Temperatures under -1 degrees Celsius can cause serious damage to emerging buds, so teams patrol the vineyards all night long, making sure that the fires are burning, to at least mitigate the damage.

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