When in Italy it's safe to say that you may start to binge on food. Everything there is better. The wine, the cheese, holy god what the fuck is this, this is not the salami I know, this is….this is ridiculous, why have people not been importing this?! Ok so you get the idea, food is essential in Italy. What else is essential in Italy? Ferrari. There are Ferrari t-shirts, hats, and all sorts of expensive merchandise with a Ferrari sticker on it. Ferrari is practically the national brand of car…if everyone didn't drive FIAT's. What they don't tell you, while in Italy, is you need to be very careful mixing these two essentials, especially if you're a larger person like I am at 6'4" 220lbs.
(I just need to lop off a couple inches to fit. Quick someone grab me a hacksaw!)
A Ferrari isn't normally built for a man of my stature. It is built for a bulimic 5'2" Circus contortionist with a body fat of -3. But I'm getting ahead of myself. I was in Italy on vacation with my family and we had gone to Sicily first. We ate, drank, and had a raucous good time. I even got to drive the auto journalist special, a manual diesel wagon! And let me say it's a helluva good time on Italian B roads and volcano summits. It might be a bit wide for most Italian cities, but I whipped that thing. During the stay, I took up a penchant for Nutella….lots of Nutella. Combined with Croissants, pizza, beer, and many other things, but mostly Nutella. At the end of the first week, I would say I was about 15% Nutella.
We left Sicily and headed from Rome where we would be spending another week. That night I figured my driving days in Italy were over, so I went completely crazy on the Nutella and bought two large jars, subsequently finishing the first off that night. Now at this point I would like to add this, at no time during my travels did I think about trying to read the nutrition label for calories. I was on vacation in Italy, I knew that I was going to gain some weight. What I didn't know was how much and how many of those calories were actually because of the Nutella. After 3 full jars, in addition to all of the other things I was eating, I was shooting for a massive coronary! Just the Nutella alone up to that point was about 17,000 calories, which comes out to be about 6lbs of pure fat. Take that in for a second. Way too much, even for a vacation. Now that you have an idea about how my experience with the first Italian essential went, let me tell you about the second one.
I woke up that first morning, headed downstairs with my wife and family, stepped out to this sight. A brand spanking new 458 Italia. Throughout the travels I had been marveled by all the other car porn we don't get in the states. A new Ranger, a cool Renault Twizy, and many many diesels. This took the cake. Then it got better. This is what was on the back of it. I could for a reasonable sum of money, drive it. I spent the next twenty minutes figuring out if I had enough money left over to drive the car and make it the rest of the week. My wife and family finally just said it would be an early birthday present and with that I ran back upstairs to grab my license and wallet.
(Goodbye unborn children, hello Ferrari)
Now here is where the two story lines meet. We were staying in a 9-story walk up, and without doing much besides eating for the past two weeks; I made it up about 3 flights then had to catch my breath. Finally making it back to the street I told the guy that I would like a go. We then spent another 20 minutes of me signing my life away. I am pretty sure that Ferrari now owns me and my future children and possibly their children. Sorry kids dad needed to drive a Ferrari! There I was, in Italy, about to drive a Ferrari. Things couldn't get better.
That is until I tried to get in the car, and I am used to small cars, I have an FRS, so I know how to slide myself into bucket seats. Trying to get into the Ferrari though took a bit of wrangling. Okay so it took like 5 minutes to actually get into the seats. The guy running the whole thing was built for that car, or the other way around, small and Italian. I was big and American. 'MURICA! When I finally wedged myself into the Ferrari buckets, the lumbar hit me squarely in the back so awkwardly that I was pushing my chest towards the steering wheel just so I wouldn't be crippled from the cobblestone streets. Not only that, but the side bolstering was not that conducive to my new "curves" from said Nutella. What had happened was that I had become a fat overindulgent American on vacation, and now I can't really fit into one of my dream cars! But come on, first world problems, I was in a Ferrari.
(Why Ferrari, why are there so many buttons?)
After trying to play with the seat and steering wheel for a while getting things in the right space so I didn't kill both of us, we finally got underway. My thoughts raced of how fast I would go and how everyone would be watching me in the Rosso Corsa Ferrari. The latter happened, the former did not. Essentially, I took the Ferrari around a tour of Rome, which has a top speed of 25mph. So I endured pain, feeling like a fat ass, signing away my future children, and my money for 25 minutes of 25mph driving. And you know what, I would probably do it all over again. I get to say I drove a Ferrari in Rome.
One last word, to show I didn't go quietly into driving boringly through the city, with the guy running the show next to me, I managed to get on it in a tunnel for about 3 seconds and kicked the back end out. The dude nearly had a heart attack. That in itself was worth the price of admission and the 6lbs of Nutella.
(Chubby Bunny shown above)
Follow me here on Twitter
Check out my other stuff!
Stay tuned this week for another Sittin Waitin Wishin