by Melinda Gallo

Firenze piccola

Yesterday after Dave and I went for an afternoon showing of Syriana at the Odeon theater, we walked over to Simone's restaurant to pay him a visit. He loves to hear what we think of the other restaurants in town. At almost 6:30PM, the sun hadn't yet set, so it was nice to walk over Ponte Vecchio and past Santo Spirito.

We arrived while he was busy making a few desserts for the evening's customers. I walked in and announced that we went to Momoyama for sushi. He was surprised since I usually tell him beforehand when we are about to try another restaurant. And, since he used to work there, he might have been able to make sure we were treated right. Valentina, one of Simone's associates, also worked at Momoyama before she, Antonella, and Simone decided to open their own restaurant a little over a year ago.

We also got to see Massimiliano, Simone's brother, who just returned from working at a friend's restaurant in Torino for the Giochi Olimpici (Olympic games). He'd been gone for over a month and Simone hasn't been able to have a day off since, so he was happy too.

The second I told Simone about how I didn't like the sushi that much at Momoyama and how I felt the rice wasn't that fresh, the cameriere (waiter) from Momoyama who served us showed up. He looked at me, then at Dave, and then back at me. He looked like he was in one of those game shows where they play tricks on you. He looked pretty shocked to see us again.

"Parlando del diavolo e spuntano le corna," (speaking of the devil) Antonella told him. He was surprised and said, "Spero che stiate parlando del cibo e non del servizio." (I hope you're talking about the food and not the service). "Il servizio era eccezionale" (The service was exceptional), I told him. "Non esagerare!" (Don't exaggerate), Simone said to me as he smiled.

The cameriere left with Valentina to fare la spesa(do some shopping) and I continued telling Simone all about our dinner once I heard the front door shut behind them.

I forget how small Florence is at times. I see lots of people in the street that I've seen in other places. Sometimes I stare at people and wonder, "Where do I know that person from?" But, little did I think that I'd see the cameriere from the night before at Simone's restaurant!

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