Allergies in Rome and “Hospital” Food

Posted on April 23, 2011


Dear Movie Rental in Rome,

I have been wondering about this kind of place. A place to buy and rent movies or video games. I have passed by this shop many times but never went inside. They seemed to have strange hours and I was always unsure of what the huge ATM looking machines were for. I learned today that they are indeed like a Red Box in the states. This “banco-mat” is similar to a free-standing rental box and I have been given an old “membership” card and was told the secret pin. Tomorrow I can try to get a movie! I love movies and that won’t change even if I am in another country. I still go to bed watching something at night or at least read some of a book. I am on my 8th book since December. The other night I was telling the parents about my lunch with the girls last week when we had the funny conversation about a “bun in the oven.” S knew exactly what I was saying since it was in a movie he had seen. An old classic. At once we both remembered it was Grease!! It is when Rizzo thinks she is pregnant and then she tells Marty and by the time she goes back to the car Kenickie heard the news! Man, I truly LOVE that movie and cannot wait to watch it in Italian! I might even buy it if I can’t rent it because I want to see it that much! I have the special edition at home but I don’t think that I have the option to watch it in Italian! I have known this movie since I was about 5 and I know not only the songs but the dialogue by heart. My nana used to tell me to “say a line from Grease” to make her friends laugh while they played cards!

Speaking of my nana…I had another vivid dream about her last night. She is here with me in Rome and comes to me quite often in my dreams. I feel so happy when I wake up from being near her in that other realm where time doesn’t matter. Sometimes I truly believe that the dreams are more real than whatever it is that we do here while we are alive. Everyone is invited in dreams and there is more truth to those messages than any text message or voice message you receive on this lonely planet. In dreams is where you are most honest and things are clearest. You get answers from dreams if you just get quite and ask before bed. When you wake up you usually have your answer. This works for me but try it if you have not done something like this already. I got up around 10:30 and opened my window. Gloom and shadows; no sunshine. Bleak. Very bleak. After I had a shot of yogurt I decided I was still tired and wanted to ask more questions and go back to dreaming. I made my bed and cleaned up my room but ended up laying back down with my fuzzy blue blanket and napped after lunch. Matteo, Tommaso and now their papa wasn’t feeling that well. Whatever this virus is better stay away from me. I don’t want to be puking and not be able to sleep through the night. I heard someone throwing up last night and worried that it was Matteo in his bed. I feared he was throwing up in his sleep and opened my door enough to peek out while holding my breath listening for breathing from his room. Nothing. I hear the sounds of retching again and realize it is from the other bathroom. Okay it isn’t Matteo.

Just to get out of the house, the family left to go to the cinema to watch a cartoon movie this afternoon. They invited me last-minute but I prefered to stay home and relax alone. I like having the house to myself and the silence. Tommaso and his mom got into a huge fight over some ball right before they stepped out so I didn’t feel like being a part of that. I do need to go to the movies soon though. The last movie I saw in the theatre was that terrifying film Frozen with the ex. I need to watch something in English and I want hot fresh popcorn with butter damnit!

I put on MTV Italia and did a 30-minute workout until I was sweating and needed a shower. It was around 5 by then and I was getting hungry again. I had a bowl of cereal with banana but I was still hungry. I ate two chocolate eggs but I was still hungry! I tried some breakfast cookie type granola cracker but it just made me more hungry! I felt like “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and couldn’t stop munching and returning to the kitchen. After two stale crackers and a bite of some cake I surrendered to the shower to distract myself from eating. I don’t think I was that hungry I think I was just bored. After I change into clean clothes I turn on my computer to see if my sister was on Skype . She was! We talked for a little while and it made me miss her even more. I really hope that she gets to come and visit me and then we get to fly home together in September. I really don’t have that much time here it has already gone by so fast! I still have so much to do and see I better quit napping and get to it!

I hear the key unlocking the front door and the sound of the buzzer that the boys are arguing who gets to push it. It doesn’t matter if someone is home or not they insist on ringing the buzzer until the door is open. Then throw their jackets to the floor and stumble mindlessly looking to make a new mess or investigate their last mess that they created. It is nearly 8 and I was ready for dinner. Once they settled in and T began cooking I came out to see how their movie was. They really didn’t seem too thrilled and I could tell that Tommaso wasn’t feeling that great. Sort of pale and not as loud as normal. Definitely feeling sort of sick. S confirms that he isn’t feeling well and that he feared that Tommaso was next. T and I agree that we will not get sick! “The stronger sex will not be sick!” she raises her fist to her husband with a gentle laugh. She tells me that for dinner it is a “hospital menu” since the boys are all sick. I don’t mind the menu. When someone has a stomach bug it is best to eat rice with the water and then add oil and lemon. The taste is clean and simple and soothes the stomach. S tells me that not only him and the boys are sick but he spoke with his mother and his father and brother are sick as well! I don’t want to be next! I eat my hospital food and then cleared my dishes and took them to the kitchen. I see that the dishwasher needs to be emptied so I finish it and then proceed to clean the entire kitchen. T thanks me and I tell her that it is no problem. I actually like to clean the kitchen. I tell her this and she laughs. I assure her that I am serious and tell her that it is easier to clean someone else’s kitchen. She nods in agreement and says that she understands what I mean. I put on the apron and wash the pots and pans by hand and then set them out to dry. I feel a sneeze coming on but it passes. I smile to myself when I realize that I have not sneezed all day! Rome gifted me the suffering of spring allergies and I have been fighting it for about two weeks. I began taking a prescription that T got for me and today is day 3. It works! Or maybe since I never left the house today I wasn’t exposed to anything in the air? I will know tomorrow when I leave to check out the movie rental “banco-mat”…..


Posted in: When in Rome