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Silly Me

I want to speak Italian. I have for as long as I can remember. My grandmother spoke it well, and often. I was young when she died but to me all of the sounds are wrapped in warmer memories of pink mint candies, lasagna, ripening bananas, and her rose garden. Unfortunately, the Italian language did not make it much further down the bloodline. I’ve pulled out the dictionaries and relished in my Rosetta Stone program, but much is lost when you arrive and you’re faced with rapid fire words and waving arms. Still, I listen, I try to remember, and say “afternoon” when I should be saying “good morning.” Twice this week I have gone into the store and asked to “fly” something instead of buy something.

I had plans today to sit with an Italian girl who wants to learn English. We were to meet at 2pm. I would read a sentence in Italian, she the same in English. I was so excited to actually speak a full sentence in Italy, and have someone understand it! Something came up and she had to postpone.

Determined to speak, I went to the square where the old men play cards every afternoon. After the formalities, which I’m sure were painful to any real Italian, we chatted – in a broken kind of way. “Where are all the women” I asked, puzzled by their absence. Perhaps they are locked in a closet after siesta, or condemned to the kitchen?? No, “In Chiesa,” I was told. “Why aren’t the men in church” I asked. “Because they play cards in the square.” Ah…yes, silly me.

The boys will turn into a fine painting someday, as soon as I learn how to ask them to sit for it. Ciao.


4 Responses to Silly Me

Welcome to the club! I have been actively learning Italian for over 10 years now. Keep trying. You won’t forget all of it, but you’ll forget some.
I am living vicariously through you, I do take trips to Italy, (in fact will be there for 10 days this autumn) but have never just stayed somewhere long enough like you are doing… and painting!!!

Posted by mimi torchia boothby watercolors · via · 139 months ago

Buon Giorno, Kelly !!
I’m glad that I found your blog on your stay in Italy! I read through your postings and they are wonderfully charming, humorous and inspiring. Aiden has inherited your gift of gab, I’m sure !! I remember communicating with old folks in a piazza in Bagna di Lucca in Tuscana in broken tourist Italian and what a hoot! The old women were there in black (no chiesa) and the men were elsewhere drinking grappa !!

Posted by Mike Peters · via · 139 months ago

Hi Kelly – Sorry I haven’t been following your blog – total “artist” meltdown, now in Montana with Mandy. Having fun! Leaving the meltdown far behind.

You sound great – and your blog is fun and so clever – I’ll stay tuned in!

Is anyone painting in acrylic there – somehow I think the instructor would have frowned upon me : (

Sold a painting this week!! The “Pink Forest” piano piece. YAY!

Posted by Ginny · via · 139 months ago

Hi Mike, thanks for the note! I’ll let Aidan know where she gets all of her talent! Actually, I think she has taught me a thing or two. I hope all is well in Driggs. Please stay with me – it’s nice to know you’re hear. Say hello to Sandy, and if you see Georgina please tell her that I am speaking Italian all the time, even if no one else understands me. Cheers. kelly

Posted by kelly · via · 139 months ago


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