A Pair of Turtles, Bocce and a Sober Saturday Night

Posted on April 16, 2011


Dear Toast,

Toast here in Rome is not a slice of bread after it has been dropped into a toaster. Toast is a tiny sandwich with one thin slice of deli meat and maybe a little cheese warmed and toasted once. I made my own version of a toast sandwich with one scrambled egg for my breakfast this morning. After my coffee and apple with yogurt and cinnamon I was still hungry. I grilled the toast in a white pan and cooked an egg in another tiny egg pan. I slept in til after 1 pm so this snack was more like my lunch. I turned on the TV and enjoyed my sandwich still in my pajamas. It was not a cold day but the sun wasn’t shining enough to tan me so I threw on exercise clothes and packed water and a banana for a day at the park. I walked towards my park and was happy to explore another side of the park that I never realized existed. I cut across the street and there was an entire other side filled with more paths and benches and people on this cloudy Saturday afternoon. I brought along my book to read once in a while when I found a bench calling my name under quiet trees. I must have been wandering for a few hours when I soon found out that it was close to 5 I decided to head back towards the other side of the park. I found a handful of nanus playing bocce ball in a secluded fenced off area that I never knew about. I carefully watched from the top of the bridge and considered walking over and asking to play but the only woman with this group of old men looked like she enjoyed being the only woman. I didn’t want to take that from her but this won’t stop me next time I see them playing. I am good at bocce and need to play while I am here. Even if it means challenging a bunch of 80 year olds! I watch them curse each other and try to understand all their hand gestures to figure out which team is winning. I cannot tell and finally get bored watching and move on. I sit under one tree for one last time today and read another chapter of my book. I take the long way home and fill my water once I get passed the fountain. I was happy that I crossed the water and found two turtles swimming along side each other. 5 minutes must have passed until one noticed me watching them mindlessly swimming in circles. I made eye contact with the smaller one and I swear he looked back to me. I knew for sure that we made some kind of connection when it swam right towards me until it hit the rocks then stopped for a true starring contest. I won since after about 30 seconds he swam back to his partner. But he definitely came to me. I pass all sorts of couples and children playing in the park. I can’t help but notice all the pairs in the park. I stay strong and head home by myself.  By the time that I got home the family had just walked in the same time that I did. We met by the elevator but I took the stairs. The boys followed my lead.

The boys were happy playing with new bright red beach balls and I noticed their new short haircuts. I told them I liked their hair and they shyly told me thank you. After the routine of washing my hands and changing my pants, like the kids I have grown accustomed to this order when I come through the front door, I turn on my laptop. I had to post the pictures from last night of drinks with my girls and make the funny comments along with them. It is close to dinner time and T asks me what I prefer for dinner. I suppose it was unanimous that the choice was pasta. During our penne pasta Matteo tells me that his face is hot. I ask him why and he tells me that he does not know. T checks his little forehead and late takes his temperature. Another fever! Poor kid, I hope that it isn’t that bad and he doesn’t have to miss school. We finish eating and I finish the wine from the night before. Since Matteo wasn’t 100% T and S had to cancel their plans of going out for the evening. Which meant that I could go out if I chose to. I chose to stay in. It is difficult for me to muster up the energy to get ready and go for drinks when I planned all day to stay in. I get a text from Miss Ford that they are back in Trastevere and invited for a beer. I tell her thanks but no thanks but look forward to chocolates in Eur tomorrow. I plan on meeting her around lunch then having one of those days where we don’t know what we are doing until we are doing it! Chocolate for lunch sounds like a date to me so I can rest easy knowing that I have plans for Sunday. I should probably wake up early to work out before this chocolate overdose since I am sure that we will have drinks along with the sugar. Nothing wrong with a little bubbly on a quiet Sunday afternoon…Such a difference from the Sunday Fundays I have retired back home.


Posted in: When in Rome