Two-Steppin’ Sicilians

February 19, 2012

I do my utmost to hide my roots (read: American-ness) in Italy. Off with the ratty T-shirts. Off with the jean jacket. Off with the comfy duds. On with the crisp clothes and killing shoes. (I’ve written about this battle here.)

Il marito has been forbidden to wear his normal Paul Bunyon getup–no muck boots or plaid flannel shirts or baggy-butt Levis. Poor guy has to outfit hisself in a man-purse and taut Italian shirts (but they have no pockets! he wails) if he wants to chaperone me around the piazza.

And so this troika at the Catania airport caught my eye. No hiding for them. Look at those big Texas grins. Stetsons a mile wide. Old Glory purse. Rodeo belt buckles weighty enough to pull you to your knees.

Sicilian Cowgirls, members of a line-dance troupe, copyright Jann Huizenga

I struck up a conversation as the barista whacked espresso grounds into the sink. Turns out they’re not from Dallas after all. Nope. Nor Amarillo or Waco.

They don’t even speak English because…

…they are born-and-bred Sicilians!

They run a Country Western Line Dance school (Etna Country Style) based in Catania, and are on their way to a dance competition in northern Italy.

Etna Country Style Line Dance School

And off they run to catch their plane, doing the Texas two-step.

Watch these Sicilians dance the tush-push here.


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32 comments to Two-Steppin’ Sicilians

  • I guess one person’s raw hamburger is another’s steak tartare.

  • Mark

    I’m an italophile of forty-years. About twenty years ago, C&W two-stepping was all the rage in gay circles on the US East Coast & in London. That’s where I met the love of my life, at a Gay-Lesbian Two-Stepping Dance at a Baptist Church in Cambridge. I guess the appeal of the dance is wider than its inventors know! Never occurred to us to look for C&W dancing in Rome when we were there a couple of months ago. Wonder if it has spread that far north?

    • Jann

      Yes, I’m sure it has. These Sicilians were going to Verona, I believe. What a great story about meeting your partner! Do you still dance??? Welcome to the blog, Mark and thanks for commenting.

  • Leave it to the Italians to turn the two-step into something that looks like a hybrid Riverdance/Aerobic routine. I am a Texan who has seen and (sometimes even participated in two-steppin)…I think maybe it comes out different if you actually have cow-flop on your boots, ticks along your panty-line, and are half-full of beer and barbeque after a hard day of walking the fences. Hey Bubba, you gotta slide it, baby!

  • Love the picture. An Italian friend told me about “dude ranches” in the Piedmonte. Never looked into them, but ??? Planning my three weeks in Sicily today. Sooooo excited to see your lovely town and so much more.

    • Jann

      Bonnie–you’re going to Ragusa Ibla???? When????? It would be such fun to meet if I’m there when you go. (Am in the US right now.)

  • Aida

    Jann, I am not surprised! Why? Because my friends in molise, Italy who are Italian own a western trekking
    Horse back riding ranch… Italian cowboys and cowgirls, with American quarter horses…John Wayne
    Would be proud….

    • Jann

      Aida, I took a look at your friends’ site–their ranch looks so cool! What a perfect way to discover Molise!!!! Thanks for the tip.

  • HaaHaa.
    I didn’t expect that. Just thought they were some crazy American Cowboys/girls!
    I wonder if they just watched “Urban Cowboy” or something?

    Fab Photo, Jann. xxX

  • Hilarious Jann! Great detective work too. Bigger than Texas you might say!!

  • Jann, I did not see that coming! Although I should’ve known the guy was too cute to come from Texas! hee hee! I loved the twist to this story! 🙂

    • Jann

      Bella, let’s pray a Texan cowboy doesn’t see this comment! 🙂

    • Um, excuuuuuu-uuuuse me?! Hahah. My ex (who I met in Italy!) is from Texas and he was most certainly adorable. 😀

      As far as the dance? Doesn’t do it for me! I’m from New York City!

    • Jann

      Yes, there are very cute Texans–Matthew McConaughey and Willie Nelson come to mind! Thanks for commenting, Audra!

  • Wayne

    That’s VERY funny

  • sandee wheeler

    I love this picture Jann! I watched the video. This is how I THINK that I look doing the Tush Push!

  • Charlie

    well, this is living proof that you can’t judge a “book” by its cover! The guy is super cute too.

  • che buffo! Italians make such classy cowboys and cowgirls! It’s the tarantella with a little good ole U. S. of A. southern home style thrown in!!

  • Sam

    It seems to me that real Texans traveling in Italy wear khakis and polo shirts. They would be far more interesting to the locals if they dressed like this!

  • Nancy Hersch

    Funny story.

  • John Schinina

    Jann, Your something else, never and I mean never stop these great emails. You have no idea how I enjoy them. You just fill all of us with these wonderful stories or maybe I should say facts. Ciao Bella

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