You must wash your teeth before bed!

Posted on December 21, 2010

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Dear Flat Iron and Curling Iron,

I regret that you took up space and weight in my luggage. Neither of you have done anything for me and refuse to heat up. So much for ever wanting to do my hair straight. The past few days it rained so probably not a good idea anyway. The weather here is very bizarre. Sort of like Reno, in that you have no idea if it is a 4-shirt day or a day that you don’t need a jacket when you step out. Today was almost 60 degrees. It was beautiful and clear yet a few days ago it snowed! I feel at home during this weather that is not so predictable. Actually, it probably is predicted I just don’t understand the news or radio still so it is always a surprise to me!

I believe that every Tuesday T’s mother-in-law comes to “do the iron”. Today she needed my help and I was about to leave but she caught me and asked me to help her do something. Unsure what she was saying (she only speaks italian but can say ” thank you very much”…maybe more but that is all I have heard in english thus far) I followed her to the room. She said some more foreign words and I just said “non so…” which means “don’t know…” then she reaches for a poorly folded sheet and tells me “e ora!” which I know is “and now…” OH! she wants me to help her fold the grande ones! I see, of course, no one can ever fold sheets alone. Well you can they just are not as good as when two people fold together. I help her with a few and she tells me in italian it is impossible to do alone.  Capisco. si. I am catching on to the language a little more everyday.

I went to the language school today to give them a hefty deposit and met one of the teachers. She admired that I came all the way from Reno to take care of some “little wild italian boys”. She tells me that some reason even though Italians are probably the most wild children they sure grow up to be good people. Agreed. We part ways and she reminds me to keep talking to the boys in english. Even though they may not understand it is all about repetition and the sounds of English that they will pick up on. Like the boy’s mother says,”I talk to them all the time and they don’t listen. But I know that they hear me. Same for you just speak to them slowly and don’t worry if they understand or not. They hear you!” That is true of all people of all ages I am sure of it.

After I get back home its after lunch (1:30pm) and I am not sure if I should wait for T or go and find something to eat somewhere. I had my daily “snack” of Parmigiano Reggiano earlier and I was craving some good pizza. I read a chapter of my book and she is still not home. I gather my purse, gloves and hat and step out. I walk out the front door and I see her down the steps parking her motorcycle! I told you all, this woman and I have incredible timing. I decide to run back upstairs and wait for her. In case she has not had lunch I would rather eat with her. She comes up soon after me. I play it off like I did not just run up 4 flights of stairs and I have been sitting in the sun reading. HA I have a Bush moment I think that my book was even upside-down! I ask her if she ate and she said yes that she had something on the street. Ok, well I am going to go get some pizza but I will be right back. She tells me ciao and I step out for my 4th time today. Earlier we went to the bank to withdraw some money from my account. Can’t wait to see what the fee is for pulling 210 euro internationally. That is just a part of my deposit. The course is expensive but very much well worth it. My class will be 5 days a week 3 hours a day for 4 weeks. Intense but what else do I have to do? I need a schedule or else I will sit around and eat too much I am sure of it!!

The people who live above us are so busy and loud all the time. They move around a lot and someone wears heels 24/7 for sure. I feel that it is a family of 4 above us. A kid under 6, a teenager and the parents. The teen likes music that I recognize which is always nice to hear. Even if it is OLD Rage Against the Machine and super old NOFX! He mixes in some good jams once in a while during the afternoon. I like it best when he sings along with his italian accent it is entertaining. I am happy he is into music that I know even if it is when I myself was his age.

While Tommaso had Basket today Matteo, Nana and me played at home. Once he got bored with building with wood, done with the Nativity set and over throwing all the DVDs around he decided he wanted to wrestle his Nana. I am surprised how much these women take from these little dudes. They throw punches and put their own Nana in headlocks! She plays along but I realize that they have rules about when to stop. Just like real wrestling each will “tap-out” and hit the floor 3 times when they are done! YES! I can totally play this game. I tap out after less than 10 seconds after getting a cheap shot with a bear to the mouth. We start again and I get him in a hold he can’t get out of. This kid is strong. I let him wriggle free and he stands up on the couch and flexes his right bicep at me and growls! Oh my God I just love this kid so much! He wants to arm wrestle me, my favorite! We laugh and when he realizes that he can’t really take me he head-butts Nana to get her back into the fight. Once Nana and I are out of breath Matteo finds he has the hiccups! So funny when little kids get them their entire body jumps with each hiccup! He tells me he needs “some water please” in his best english so I lead him to the kitchen. He still has them and tells me he needs lemon. Must be some new Italian cure I don’t know about. I squeeze some on a spoon for him like he shows me and he takes it making the best sour lemon face I have seen all my life! The hiccups go away and he calms down. Hiccups cure=two tablespoons pure lemon juice. I won’t forget.

After swordfish pasta dinner the boys need to get to bed. “Wash your teeth!” I hear them say. I like it better than brush your teeth but I still tell them it is really “brush” your teeth but either way you are washing them after all right? My entertainment for the day. They want to play but I tell them tomorrow (domani), there are plenty of tomorrows to come. They agree and say “good-night!” to me in english like they do every night and I tell them buonanotte. We usually say it at least 4 times back and forth before I go and wash my teeth before bed every night.

One more funny thing the boys did today while taking a bath I need to share… they set up “bowling” with all the products in the shower on the shelf then each one takes turns hurling a giant dinosaur at the bottles! When everything crashes they yell “bowling!” Boys will be boys.

To all the boys and men in my life, I love you all just the same. Even when you play silly games like this.

Lex

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Posted in: When in Rome