It's always great to be home. I love Arizona and of course the United States. I am proud of my country for sure - we are far from perfect, but we are an amazing group of people and country. As much as I love Italy, I would never leave the US to live permanently in Italy. Italy remains a wonderful place to visit.
Somehow our efficiency and need for quick and fast has taken over every aspect of our life and partially to our detriment. Our food really has suffered. One thing I notice on each trip to Italy is I can eat the food and drink the wine without any hint of heartburn or indigestion whereas in this country virtually everything here bothers me at some level. Our food is full of preservatives, chemicals, and fat. Their food is actually digestible and nourishing. Our food is slowly killing us at the expense of convenience and speed. Our health care system is a self fulling prophecy and result of the diabetes and obesity created by the mega food companies - they all stand to make billions from this system.
Thus I am so encouraged by the Farmer's Markets and Whole Foods and restaurants that use organic ingredients. I love designing home gardens and taking the time to cook with fresh ingredients grown locally. Let's all try to adapt this wonderful aspect of Italian culture - insisting our food be of higher quality and we take the time to prepare it properly and enjoy it properly.