Santas on Vespas

Just when you think you've seen it all...

Huw Williams | 20:32, Wednesday 24 December 2014 | Turin, Italy

I suppose it's a sign of my advancing years, but it seems to me that there comes a time in life when you begin to think that you've seen it all. Nothing much would surprise you anymore. I think I might have reached that point three years ago with the line-dancing Santas.

And then, looking out of the window of the tram the other day, I realised that I hadn't seen the half, there is still so much great potential for surprise. For there out of the window, were more Santas, too many Santas to count, on mopeds. And these were no ordinary mopeds, these were the real McCoy, these were Vespas. Beautiful Vespas, old and new, many of them carrying two Santas at a time. The Santas cheered, they ho-ho-hoed, they waved their arms and punched the air, and they tooted their Vespa hooters with reckless abandon.

It felt like a cultural fusion and it reminded me of one of the many reasons why I love living in Italy - that no matter what it is, it can always be improved by becoming more Italian. How do you improve on the image of Santa in his Coca-Cola red and white outfit? Easy - ditch the sleigh and the reindeer and sit him on a classic piece of Italian design and engineering. I really do love it, and it is quite infectious because by the time our tram turned the corner, I had already conjured up in my mind the image of all those Santas parked up outside the nearest coffee shop with much back-slapping and downing of shots of Lavazza coffee. In fact, it is quite likely that that is exactly what they were doing.

And quite rightly so.

Document Actions