Could this be the best part about Italy? When it rains as hard as it is doing today in Padua, on a Sunday, you revel in nothingness. You don't want to get out of bed. You have no reason to get out of bed. Everything is closed anyway. (But actually that is not true the closer we get to Christmas.)
I started to appreciate this aspect of life when first living in Rome in 1992: the zen of doing nothing. It still continues almost unchanged in 2009, although a few more northerners try to be productive on Sunday by shopping when they can, since shops can sometimes have open hours on the Sabbath day.
In the US, Sunday became a fairly regular day when I was about 8 years old. All the shops were allowed by law to be open every day of the week that year. By the age of 16, I was even working on Sundays in the shops.
Upon arrival in the bel paese, that was distinctly not the reality here. Sunday was for church, relaxation, family lunches and/or walks in the city square or along the riverbanks. Maybe an ice cream cone could be eaten in the afternoon, but work or hard-core shopping was not part of the possibilities for that particular day of the week.
Now I follow my dog's cue and don't even want to step foot outside of the house. It's a glorious time to do nulla--