The message is clear from the hand-written poster above the counter — all talk of novel coronavirus, lockdowns or virology is strictly forbidden.
In this little bar on the outskirts of Rome, the manager hopes to give her clients a brief respite from the global pandemic while they drink their coffee.
“We’ve been talking about the same thing for months, so we chose to lighten the atmosphere,” Cristina Mattioli, manager of the Feeling bar, told AFP.
As the first European country hit by the pandemic, Italy has been under the shadow of COVID-19 for longer than most, and endured one of the toughest lockdowns.
After a heady few weeks over the summer where life almost returned to normal, the pandemic again dominates everything, with deaths mounting each day.
“It’s not at all about denial, or not understanding the difficulty of what the world is going through, but just about giving yourself a break,” Mattioli said.
She said most customers in the bar, adorned with wooden boxes filled with tea on the walls and offering a tempting array of sandwiches and pastries, have reacted positively to the ban.