Finally opening up

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

It only takes one little change to bring about greater changes, they say. Today, I went to the market and I wasn't my usual passive self. At times, I feel a bit intimidated (or maybe judged by some), so I keep quiet, remain polite, and go about my day.

I arrived at the market quite bubbly today. Maybe because the sun was back out, maybe because I only had a half an hour before they closed, or maybe because I felt good about getting so much done before lunch.

I asked the ortolana (green grocer) today about the garlic she was selling. She explained the three types of garlic. The most popular type is the garlic we all know. The second type is aglio nuovo (new garlic), which looks just like regular garlic except it has a long stem still attached and it's quite difficult to break apart. The third type, I just found out about, aglio giovane (young garlic), which looks like green onions, because it is harvested before the bulb is formed. The ortolana told me how she loves it even more than regular garlic because it is pių leggero (lighter). She told me that I could even put it raw on a salad, it's so good. "Posso far cuocere un po' con le zucchine?" (Can I cook some with zucchini?) I asked. "Assolutamente!" (Absolutely) she responded and confided in me that that's her favorite. She normally doesn't say much to me, but then again, I normally don't say much to her either.

I then went to the macellaio (butcher) who asked me, "Ti piace cucinare?" (Do you like to cook?) "Sė, ma mi piace mangiare di pių," (Yes, but I like to eat more,) I responded with a big smile. Usually he doesn't ask me much besides questions about what I want.

My last stop was to the forno (bakery), where I haven't gone to in awhile because I found another bakery that makes fantastic schiacciata (flat bread). The blonde girl who works there saw me as I was at another counter and smiled at me. I went up to her and said, "Ciao, come stai?" (Hi, how are you?) Normally, I don't even ask such questions, but her smile warmed me up. We discussed the weather and its craziness in the middle of April. I was happy she didn't call me signora (madam) like she sometimes does.

As I left the market with bags so heavy that my fingers hurt, I realized that all this time I thought everyone was a bit distant with me, I was, in fact, the one who was distant with them. Once I opened up and talked to them, they opened up to me too.

If you have any comments, please share them on the Living in Florence's FaceBook page. Grazie!

April 2005


December 2014

November 2014

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

May 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

December 2011

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

January 2011

December 2010

November 2010

October 2010

September 2010

August 2010

July 2010

June 2010

May 2010

April 2010

March 2010

February 2010

January 2010

December 2009

November 2009

October 2009

September 2009

August 2009

July 2009

June 2009

May 2009

April 2009

March 2009

February 2009

January 2009

December 2008

November 2008

October 2008

September 2008

August 2008

July 2008

June 2008

May 2008

April 2008

March 2008

February 2008

January 2008

December 2007

November 2007

October 2007

September 2007

August 2007

July 2007

June 2007

May 2007

April 2007

March 2007

February 2007

January 2007

December 2006

November 2006

October 2006

September 2006

August 2006

July 2006

June 2006

May 2006

April 2006

March 2006

February 2006

January 2006

December 2005

November 2005

October 2005

September 2005

August 2005

July 2005

June 2005

May 2005

April 2005

March 2005

February 2005

January 2005

December 2004

November 2004

Travel Blogs