Primarily as a hobby, we hosted dinners for tourists in our Florence home for the past two years. The benefits were plentiful. We enjoyed welcoming foreigners to our home and sharing a great meal. Like many others since January of this year, we hosted not one family and we are surely missing the company.
The dictionary states that enrichment means the action of improving or enhancing the quality or value of something and not only in terms of money. We are truly missing the networking with other people. Their stories are rich and backgrounds so different, but at the same time, there are so many commonalities.
Communication is not always straightforward. English is 95% of the time the common language, however, even with non-native speakers or other guests who not speak any of the languages we can, you still can spend a pleasant evening. Though without a doubt language makes it easier!
Just a reflective blog to say that I really understand the pain of many who suffer from the decrease in tourism, moreover if it is your bread and butter.
On the upside, I do like the trend at the moment that municipalities also turning this forced moment of lack of tourism into new touristic strategies. There is plenty of time to work on the quality of what to offer to visitors. The goal is to make it more attractive to spend quality time in cities. Many places suffer from "snapshot visitors", staying often less than 24 hours. A good example is what they are trying to do in Venice, where the millions of tourists over the years caused damage to the environment. The mayor is trying to turn away the cruise ships offloading thousands for less than a 10-hour stay. As always there will be an ongoing battle between revenue and what is best for sustainability.
Hopefully, we all find smarter ways to enjoy our cultural and natural heritage in a sustainable way.