Men at Work (in Sicily)

December 3, 2012

There’s been a lot of talk recently, with the whole Euro-zone mess, about the “idle hordes of civil servants” in Sicily. Lest youย think that nobody is lifting a finger on the island, here are some Sicilians hard at work.

Butcher at work in Catania, Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

Would you like a little tobacco with your beef?

Sicilians at work, copyright Jann Huizenga

We both wore blue today to match the scaffolding.

Sausage Seller in Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

Signora? Signora? Can I help you?

Street Sweeper in Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

One must maintain bella figura on the job.

Man at work in Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

Who needs virtual files when you can bury your desk with real ones?

Shoe Salesman in Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

Hey! Where’s MY caption?


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36 comments to Men at Work (in Sicily)

  • gorgeous hard working men, love them all!

  • The nurses in the clinic in palermo would never let a patient interupt a smoke break. My wife still talks about Paola, leaning over a patient, checking vital signs with a cigarette in her mouth that had grown a two inch ash. Merly an observation not a judgement.

  • Anitre

    I’ve seen a guy working a gas pump with a cigarette in his mouth in Bronte. Mama Mia! The many unhelpful and unqualified workers in Ispica council offices chatting on the phone giving you the evil eye for disturbing them would make a great photo also. However, your photos are so lovely.

  • Well done, Jann. None of these guys have the look of my ancestors, but I still find myself captivated by your photos. Are Italians that agreeable about being photographed, or are you that persuasive — and do you have any tips you’d care to share?!!

    • Jann

      Debbie–from my experience photographing in lots of places in the world, I would say that Italy is one of the best for street photography because Italians (at least southern ones) seem to genuinely enjoy the camera. Just approach with a small camera and a big smile…

  • cemal karahan

    Great photos Jann…! Congs…! and thanks for the support for working class…! The Sicilians have the same faces as we have..The same manners…!

    • Jann

      Cemal, yes–you’re right about the faces. Sicilians have the DNA of Greeks, Arabs, etc…. Nice mix, like the Turks. There are blonds in Sicily too, just like you can find in Turkey.

  • Love me some workin’ men.

  • John

    On that last photo Jann, I’m thinking…If the shoe fits, wear it.

    Tanti Baci!,


  • Ahhh, I love the dude w/ the cig dangling from his mouth & the beef! Heee.

    And hey, I have a caption for the shoe guy: “Who is that gorgeous woman taking my photo?”

    Xxxx Love.

    • Jann

      Kim, you’re always so sweet, but I’m sure the thinking was more like, “Weirdo. Why does you need a picture of shoes?”

  • My vote is on the Shoe seller too. Don’t you just love the wind and leather face? Most of your photos make me feel like I am in another era, except the very young ones. LOVE them.

  • Sam

    Final caption: “C’mon lady – if I sell one more pair of shoes, I can go home!”

  • Ian Henry

    Hi jan hope you are well, great pictures, you missed the one when you tank your car up, I am yet to be served by some one not smoking,they are truly fantastic, friendly, and very respectful people, but it’s time for change in some things. Keep up the good work.

  • E tu che vuoi??? Said with a sicilian accent of course…. O my goodness Jann, you got it in one with the sweeper guy in the gucci shades. Even as he asks the question he knows it’s not just the bright orange tutta that catches everyone’s eye. Love love love this post my dear. xx

  • Hi. I found your blog on Expats Blog. I am from Malta, just 60 miles to the south of Sicily. I am enjoying your posts so much. It helps me see the similarities between the two islands. Most of us here have Sicilian blood in us anyway, so it’s hardly a surprise that the people in these photos look so vaguely familiar. And I see that we have the same problems with hygiene ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Fewer people smoke in Australia these days since it has become socially unacceptable and it always takes me a while to get used to the smoking in Italy.

  • Angelo

    The fellow with his desk buried under files…nice photo. That looked like my desk and that was even with a PC on my desk. What paperless society? Thanks!!!!

  • Nancy

    One thing about Italy that always amazed me was the butchers, waiters, cheese makers, etc. working around the food with a cigarette hanging out of their mouth. It’s kind of disgusting but I guess that the food is so good we just over look it.

    • Jann

      Yes, Nancy. Usually I overlook all the flaws of Italy because my attention is diverted by all the wonderfulness.

  • I do like seeing men work, and these are exceptional ways to see them. Brilliant photos. The face of the shoe-seller and his posture!

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