Construction Metaphors, Spring Break-Up and a 23 Second Dinner

Posted on April 21, 2011

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Dear Scarves and Jackets,

Enough already! Today was almost 75 degrees yet EVERYONE is still wearing a scarf and coat??? I just don’t get it. Yes, they are thinner than winter versions but do I HAVE to wear them both at all times during all weather? I swear if I see someone or  even a mannequin with a bikini and scarf I’m going to lose it.  I was happy in my jeans, tank top and sandals but nana was worried I was cold! I love her concern and especially when she asks, “hai freddo?? Mettere la giacca!” (you cold? put on the jacket!) I was concerned about my layer of sunscreen NOT my layers of clothes. Lack of layers was a non-issue! The boys and I searched for lizards outside and rode bikes in the dirt. Nana failed when Matteo begged for his tiny bike with training wheels. She let him take it out from the terrace on the other side of the house and we each carried their bikes down two flights of stairs so they could play outside. I was happy to get outside and knew I would get a tan! I didn’t mind the lecture about wearing more clothes when after maybe a half an hour we came in and I had tan lines! A flip-flop tan line on my feet and my shoulders were DARK! This tanning business I am hoping for is coming true. This will be easier than I think to get color here. Since I don’t know anyone here it will be easy to be outside in my suit laying in the park (where it is open and safe!) or on my own terrace soaking up the rays and exposing my sun to sinful UV rays. At least I wear sunscreen. I don’t know people here I can do what I like without the fear of scrutiny. Being a stranger sometimes has true benefits.

On our way back inside I notice a girl with three boxes of pizzas going upstairs to visit friends (or family?) She rings them and yells, “Pizza!” into the intercom. At this moment I realize that I don’t think there is such a thing as “take-out” or “delivery” here in Rome! I think that pizza delivery was created by fat and lazy Americans that can’t get off the couch! The only reason to have pizza delivered in the states and it is perfectly acceptable, is when you are either drunk or drunk from the day before. Hence, driving is out of the question, which means you are too hung over to drive and probably began drinking again but forgot to eat breakfast. So? Pizza delivery. I am almost positive that ALL of us in this moment of drunken hunger think it will be brilliant if we can talk the pizza guy into picking up more booze…am I right? Or cigarette delivery if needed. So people of Rome pick up their own food and don’t expect a tip if they bring something to you. If someone wants something to eat you go and buy it and take it home yourself. Hell, by the time that you called and explained to someone that you wanted food delivered your minutes on your cell would run out so it would be another waste!

After playing outside we desperately needed to wash our hands. I still am compulsive washing mine but this was the first time that I convinced him after chasing him around the house on his scooter to do so. I was losing patience by this time since I had changed his pants and underwear twice in two hours!! “Fare la pipi!” I tell him and point to the bathroom. When you tell someone that you have to pee the literal translation is that you have to “make” pee-pee! I have to make pee! Go make pee!! Tommaso, while blindly shooting pee all over the back of the toilet, asks me, “come si dice in English: pipi??” I tell him how you say “pipi” in English is the same “pee-pee” just different letters but the same sound. He nods in agreement then yells “pipi!” while tripping on his pants as he escapes without washing his damn hands. Va bene. When I got Matteo in the bathroom to wash his dirty hands I told him “thank you!” while helping him dry them. He responds, “you’re welcome…” slow and in a questioning tone. It was the first time that he actually said this to me in English! I was sooooo proud!! Such a moment..funny that I thanked him for something like washing his hands but nonetheless I was amazed! Bravisimo! I assure him that was fantastic and he did well.

Tommaso had an eye doctor appointment this afternoon so it was just Matteo and I for a few hours. We tried to stay busy and keep our hands clean. We snacked and played with all sorts of games. The cleaning lady was here so I was trying to stay out of her way but Matteo was not as considerate. He wanted to play with the clay, which is on its “last leg”, if you will. It is so dried up and crappy it is not worth playing with but makes a remarkable mess. He is very creative and decided that this cork board was the “forno” (the oven) and he was going to “cook dinner” for me! “Cucinare la cena. 5 minuti in forno!” (cooking dinner. 5 minutes in the oven!) Too cute. Five minutes to a five-year-old is about 23 seconds so dinner is served! He places the crumbles on top of the lid and gets me a tiny knife and spoon from the kitchen and sets up my place mat. I pretend to take a bite with the knife and he yells, “NO! Lexie. Spoon!” Another English words he knows well! After “dinner” he got all wild and made a mess. The housekeeper just swept under the table and here comes Matteo throwing it all over the place and deliberately dumps the can to the floor. Right before he dumped the entire can of crumbles and ugly clay all over the ground he points to the table and says,” look-at-that! Mess!??” How can he be so adorable and act up at the same time!?? I love that he meshes “look at that” into one long word! He understands so it is fine however he says it. I am sure my fast-talking just rubbed off on him. Man, this kid gets to me. I think I am falling for him because I cannot stay mad and my feelings change so fast for him! I can be so angry then two seconds later I smile and get a hug and kiss? I can’t wait for my own spawn children to make me go nuts. Still mad about the mess since the housekeeper watched him and said, “ohhh Matteo…Madonna mio!” (sometimes instead of saying “oh My God” I hear “oh My Madonna!”) I cleaned it up on my hands and knees while I told him to wait in the hall for me and shut the door behind me. I wouldn’t let him come out while I cleaned it up since I knew that it would be impossible.

Soon Tommaso and T come back from the doctors. T promised Matteo that she would buy him something from the paper stand so they escaped for about ten minutes while Tommaso and I attempted a puzzle. His eyes were bothering him from his appointment so all he kept telling me was, “non vedo! Niente!” (I can’t see nothing!) this angered him and I was literally puzzled on what to say that would soothe his growing anger. He has a crazy twist in moods like the Hulk so I got nervous. He walked away from the table and wanted to call his mother but I told him to wait since she would be right back. This made him mad again but not enough to not listen to me. We paced around and threw some toys until they got back. This felt like the longest 12 minutes of my life. Perhaps it was due to the three missed calls and two messages that I had on my phone? Yeah. I caved and wrote him a message today. My sister reminded me that my own mother used to call me “Last Word Lexie” and sadly it is true. I must have to LAST word it is just the way that it is. I needed some kind of ending of my own since I didn’t approve of his ending with me. I honestly didn’t expect a response, even though I left my message open-ended, but he did respond! And I missed it?! Fact. “He gave me some crap about me not listening or something..I dunno I wasn’t really paying attention.” Wait…wrong movie. This is not Dumb & Dumber. He actually told me twice in two separate ways that he doesn’t want a relation-ship. Right now. Well right now has finally passed for me. He should have told me that all he wanted for his birthday was to be single! I wouldn’t have stressed over cupcakes for a week if he would have just manned up and agreed when I told him that he didn’t have time for me. I was hinting and trying to tell him that I felt this coming and he turned around, dissed me for a week and stole my line? It happens. What can I do? This is MY movie so I can change the ending if I don’t approve. Nothing. Now it is my turn to do nothing. About him that is…I feel such a relief. I have let go and have a better understanding of what the hell happened in that young mind of his. It is what it is and I am ready for what I choose next in my adventure. I did not come to Rome to find a boyfriend that was just a little side show…a preview to how much fun I know how to have. I don’t need a man or a boy to guide me through this country. He was like a cute distraction with green eyes but detours can be a dead-end if you turn too many times and don’t read signs. I found my way out of this construction site of a “relationship” and next time? I am running into all those cones and driving right through where it says “no entry.” Can you tell I live next door to a construction site?? Haha construction metaphors are fantastic. Don’t those signs always advise “Be prepared to STOP!” This is true in life itself. Now. Where are those “Men at Work????”

Last Word Lexie

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Posted in: When in Rome