When in (the grocery store) in Rome…

Posted on December 16, 2010


Dear Language Course,

You better be worth every Euro because you are leaving a dent in my supposed shoe collection I intend on starting from Rome. To begin my day towards this purchase I started walking the wrong way for a good 35 minutes. Made a full circle I realized when I recognized a coffe shop near the boys school. Strange enough I never felt lost or nervous I just kept walking trying to stay warm. I am laughing to myself and shaking my head once I am back near the house and begin my second journey of the day in the right direction. Good thing this was not my first day of class. Note to self: wear boots that are not flat while walking for long period of time.

I made a nice walk today from about 9am-11:30am. I stopped in a few shops, a pharmacy, a kids store and lastly the Grocery store. Can’t remember the name but doesn’t matter. For immediate purposes lets just call it “the store”. I search for a sticker on the door or near the cashiers that reassures me that my Visa card is accepted. God knows I don’t even know how to ask and I am not going to shop around with a bunch of stuff in a basket and feel like I got turned down for having a fake ID to buy booze or something!! I literally have to get in line just to ask the woman at the cashier si or no. I pull out my card and say just that, “si or no? carta de credito??” she says yes with a smile, not rolling her eyes for once. I begin wandering around this tight store. All these nanas are bumping into each other and I swear everyone over 65 sounds like they are yelling at one another but I truly believe that they just talk really fast as they age and louder and louder! I scope out the fresh produce and decide on some spinach. In my mind I know that we have some delicious tomatoes that need to be chowed for lunch. I am wanting fresh cheese to go with so I take about 10 minutes to decide on fresh mozzarella (i know boring but familiar ok!) I find the tea and see chamomile and a no-caffeine green tea. I am still off the caffeine I know that it is too powerful for me as of now. I can’t have coffee yet. I feel like a kid that is not allowed sugar because it gets them stir crazy. That is me now. The Americano that can’t handle her caffe..I get to the check out line and now it is a zoo! There are so many people in each line I don’t know which one to choose. I stay near the cashier that will take my check card. Each time a Nana nears my line she asked the same thing. Am I in line? I think that is what they are asking so I point to the line and say si. Each smiles and gets behind the last nana that just asked me. I swear to God it is Nana Day at the store! I love that they all have lovely scarfs, a hat, nylons, same black shoes, and big sunglasses. Oh and lipstick no doubt. It is finally my turn and I purchase my 4 items with success. Well sort of…My things got rung up with the Nana in front of me so we had to void my items off hers then start over for me. By now the cashier was annoyed by me. I bag my things (everyone bags their own stuff and the cashiers literally sit on a chair during their shift at the line) and split to the nearest exit. I make it safely back home and make my simple salad with olive oil and balsamic. It does not matter what you put with this olive oil it just tastes so good! I have never experienced a sweet tomato until now. They are not my favorite typically but here. now. they are my new favorite! How can each one be that tasty and perfect. And a single pull off the bread and I am dancing for my food. I still love bread and will never give it up!

After lunch the boys and their Nana are supposed to come home. I take a short nap in my room while I wait for them. I am woken up by a loud boom of “jingle bells” and I jump up thinking that they are home. No one. I look out my window and it is a family of 6 dressed like santa with instruments and what looks like a boombox from the 90’s. Italians blasting Chritsmas songs all in english. Fantastic. Merry Christmas…ughhhh. It is the most wonderful time of the year, second to my birthday of course.

The boys get home finally and we play with the nativity set for a good 20 minutes. They love this set! They only get to play with it once a year so I get it. Soon it is time for the older one to go “play basket”. We arrive, after a treacherous dark cold (freddo) steep walk behind the house up to a small old smelly gym. It smells both like young boys and old man feet. There must be 20 little boys aged 5-8. They are not half bad dribbling the ball up and down the court doing their drills. I am impressed that they stay focused this long because I was the one getting antsy in the bleachers with Mom. We make it back home and my feet are freezing!! We heard it might snow tomorrow in Rome. This is very rare I suppose so if this occurs I will feel even luckier to be here! I love the snow I just love it more when I am dressed right for it.

Tomorrow we shop. Tonight I sleep (through the entire night please for once!) 


Posted in: When in Rome