Tuesday, October 21, 2008

No Offense Meant if Your Name is Gioconda (aka: I Haven't Had My Coffee Yet--Don't Ask Me to Have a Cohesive Thought)

The hiatus is over...I am back. I spent the last week in Florence with eight other people. Me, Boy, my family, and various others. I won't exhaust you with a comprehensive list of our day to day activities, but I will share this:

This is Alvaro. Alvaro was the chef in a cooking class that we took one day. The class was run by a really wonderful woman named Paola (these are their real names. I know I don't normally do that, but if anyone who ever knows them reads this, I'll be so happy that I've reached that far that I'll suffer any wrath they want to shoot my way). She was a hilarious woman that spoke perfect English with a beautiful accent (you can kind of see her in the back of the photo). We took the class at Paola's home--a 13th century farmhouse in Chianti, Tuscany. Freaking gorgeous in that rustic way. Check it: Welcome Tuscany

Anyway. Alvaro. This man spoke not a word of English. His way was the only way, and every other word out of his mouth was "stai calma!" This roughly translates to "chill the fuck out." He'd ask you to come help him roll out the pasta, then slap your hand away when he felt you weren't doing it correctly.

I loved this dude.

Also, Paola's daughter was an adorable six year old girl named Gioconda (like the Mona Lisa). She was funny in the way only an Italian kid can be. We all fell a little bit in love with her, especially my mom. Allow me to post a conversation that took place between my mom and Paola:

Mom: Your daughter is beautiful! What's her name?
Paola: Gioconda. We call her Gio.
Mom: I love it.
Paola: She didn't at first, but she does now.
Mom: Wow. What a name. If I had known you could name a kid Gioconda when I was pregnant, I absolutely would have named my kid Gioconda.

As her first daughter, I can earnestly say, three cheers for my mom's ignorance on this issue. Seems I dodged a bullet in utero. It's not exactly a name that would have rolled off the tongue in my town.

Now for coffee. Hope this made sense.

No comments: