Let’s suppose you’ve read the New York Times travel piece on Dolce & Gabbana’s favorite places in Sicily. You understand that the island is worth the detour, yet you wonder if it truly has any gay life.
So you turn to the internet and discover that for Americans who speak English but not Italian, there is any number of gay guided tours of Sicily which will allow you to experience the orange groves, the art, the restaurants and about 10 other North American homosexuals but will leave you as out of touch with the native gay culture as Pope Ratzinger is with the 21st century.
While gay life in Sicily might still be less evolved than its mainland Italian counterparts, it nonetheless is thriving. Palermo has the Pietro Montana Gay Culture and Art Center, Cantania the Sauna Mykonos and Siracusa can boast of the B&B Casa Gaya. Acquiring Italian as one of your languages, however, will give you the keys to the kingdom. As a cursory inspection of gaysicilia.org reveals, those island boys are not waiting for tourists to come and enlighten them, and the lesbian population isn’t hanging out rolling pasta all day either.