This Christmas season has been bittersweet in Sicily. Lots of street protests here and throughout Italy over things like public spending cuts. And merchants are complaining that holiday shopping, which saw an increase in sales in the United States, was not very good here. That was something you could see.
One intangible gift was a recent law that will improve higher education in Italian un iversities, including the infamously mediocre University of Palermo. In the future, nepotism will be outlawed and students will be able to "review" teacher performance. Professors will be required to be present instead of skipping classes and "office hours."
Yes, it's bizarre that such corruption still exists here, but the government's effort to address it is a good sign.
And Christmas, of course, will be celebrated as it always has been...