Showing posts with label life in Rome. Show all posts
Showing posts with label life in Rome. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

My New Blog

Ciao Bloggisti,

After almost seven years (I can't believe it), I've started a new blog. I can be found at Arlene Gibbs Décor.

A lot has changed since November 2005. Without this blog I wouldn't have met some of the incredible people in my life or moved to Italy.

Grazie mille to everyone who took the time to read nyc/caribbean ragazza!

Monday, February 06, 2012

NY Giants Win!


As a football fan, this was a great Super Bowl, better than those boring blowout Super Bowls.

As a Giants fan, it was way too stressful. The last two minutes were unreal. It was 4:30 a.m. when the game ended so I tried to keep my yelling to a minimum. It was not easy.

I am so proud of the Giants.

They did not start the season well. Everyone thought the Packers would destroy them during the playoffs. People keep underestimating Eli despite him being named Super Bowl MVP twice.

This team has some great younger players, like Nicks, Cruz. I'm excited for the future.

Watching the game in Italian (primo down! il fumble! Mamma Mia, il sack!) was priceless.

Madonna's entrance was fantastic. That is how you do a half-time show. The next person talking smack about her age needs to STFU. She's 53 and more entertaining than "stars" half her age. I didn't see this amount of snark when men who were older than Madonna performed during half-time. That said, I'm not loving her new song. Maybe it will grow on me.



Photos:Getty Images

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Get Your Cocktail On: Caffè Propaganda

I do drink more wine and fewer cocktails since moving to Rome. However, sometimes I like to have something other than a glass of wine, prosecco, or an Aperol Spritz.

Caffè Propaganda is a newish place that opened up in the Celio neighborhood. I don't think I will be eating dinner there any time soon after reading Katie Parla's review (maybe in time the kitchen's kinks will be worked out) but for cocktails... oh hells yes.

My friend Erica and her friend met up with me and two of my friends last Friday. We got there on the early side and sat at the bar.

The décor is gorgeous. The zinc bar and the chandeliers are from France. Stunning. I happened to see an interview with one of the architects on Leonardo. I think she also designed the restaurant 'Gusto.

The music was fantastic. I heard one of my all time favorites, Stevie Wonder's "As" and a version of Marvin Gaye's "I Want You" that I've never heard before. I thought I'd heard them all. Bravo, Mr. DJ.

The crowd was very different from the Piazza Navona/Campo dei Fiori Triangle, no students or tourists. It was older, late 20s and up. There was a couple sitting next to me at the bar who might have been, stop the presses, in their 40s.

Of course none of this matters if the drinks suck. Thankfully, that was not the situation. The two bartenders, Emanuele and Desirè, broke it down.

Emanuele worked in New York City and Desirè in London. They really know their stuff. I could watch them mix drinks for hours. Their seasonal cocktails were inventive and delicious. All night we kept asking them, "what drink is that?"

The bartenders were attentive and friendly, even as the bar started to fill up later into the evening. We spoke Italian to them and they spoke English to us so they could practice.

We did get a few antipasti which were yummy.

My friends and I had a great time and will return. I have to try their Moscow Mule. I wonder what the crowd will be like once high season starts.

Caffè Propaganda
Via Claudia, 15
06-94-53-4255








Thursday, December 01, 2011

World's Oldest Interior Design Intern Strongly Recommends "Restoring A Home In Italy" by Elizabeth Helman Minchilli



I wrote about Elizabeth's book Italian Rustic.

RESTORING A HOME IN ITALY is one of her earlier books, written in 2001. I LOVED it and know I will be using it as a reference for a long time.

It's a gorgeous book. Very inspiring. It's a perfect gift for anyone who has an interest in home decor/design, Italy, or beautiful photography.

Twenty-two homes are featured from all over Italy. Elizabeth has divided the book in areas; Northwest, Northeast, Tuscany, Umbria, Rome, and the South.

There is a range of homes from restored farmhouses to apartments in Rome.

One of my favorites is the former candle factory in Trastevere that is now an incredible apartment with a courtyard.

The book is well-written and the project notes sections are useful and accessible. You don't need to be a contractor to understand the building methods Elizabeth writes about.

I read Elizabeth's book the same week I started an internship with a prominent Italian furniture/interior designer (a big fat thank you to a certain friend for the introduction).

The timing was not great as I was in the middle of finishing my novel. The last few weeks have been a little bananas. No, make that extremely bananas.

But it's been a great experience. I'm learning a lot. Also, my Italian is improving now that I'm in an office with Italians and not at home all day writing only in English.

In a bizarre way everything has come full circle. My first job of out college was in the Buyer Executive Trainee Program at Bloomingdales. I interned in the Buying offices at the flagship store during college. After I graduated, I was assigned to the Home Furnishings division.

I've been reading shelter magazines and books since the sixth grade. My friends here thought I was nuts to bring my copies of DOMINO (RIP) and Elle Decor magazines to Rome. I wondered about that too, now it all makes sense.

I'm still writing and will continue to do so. However, my post JUMPING THE BROOM experience has been a real eye-opener.

At some point I will start a separate blog that will focus on design/decor.

In the meantime, I'm very excited about this opportunity. To be able to work in this area in Italy is a plus as many of the top textile, kitchen/bathroom design, furniture, etc. companies in the world are Italian.

So while it's difficult at times to be the World's Oldest Intern (hello, a few years ago I had an assistant), hands-on experience is important. Everything I'm doing now is laying down the foundation for my future.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Bye, Bye, Berlusconi!!!!

Last night I walked over to Palazzo Grazioli (the PM's residence in Rome) with my friend Max. Max lives in L.A. but is studying in Florence for a semester.

The energy was electric and joyous. On the news there was a clip of a choir singing "Hallelujah".

I can't believe he actually resigned. It's ironic that the financial markets were responsible for his downfall, not all his scandals, not the opposition, not his low approval ratings (below 25%), or the power struggles within his coalition.

As he left Grazioli, the crowd booed and people yelled, "Shame!"

Who knows what the post Berlusconi era will look like. He's left the country in a huge mess. I think Ari Gold from "Entourage" sums up how I felt about Silvo B. (NSFW)







The buses in the background were stuck.


My friend Max.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

My Very American Life, In Italy

Ciao Bloggisti,

Recently, it has become painfully clear that I don't really speak Italian.

I speak:
Restaurant Italian

I Can Get By Italian

Shelter and Fashion Magazines Italian (not to be confused with newspaper Italian. That I don't speak well)

Running Errands Italian (my butcher, the shoe repair guy, drying cleaner lady, etc. somehow understand what the heck I'm saying)


Easy Conversations With My Italian Friends Italian

I had a HUGE wake-up call the other week. I started an internship (more on that in another post) with a Italian furniture/interior design firm. Everyone speaks English, so we are able to communicate. Also, they have many international clients and vendors. I can help out with those projects.

However, it's an office in Italy. When I have to call Italian vendors or clients, I completely panic. This is not good.

My reading comprehension is decent, but I had no idea my verbal skills were so low. Then I thought about it. I speak and write English pretty much 95% of the time here.

I do have Italian friends, but I work in America. I watch American programming and read American news. I do know what is going on in Italy. However, I'm not married to an Italian and before I did not work with Italians.

If I'm honest with myself, I worry that being fluent in Italian will somehow, "throw off" my English. I'm a screenwriter working in Hollywood. I can't afford to forget words in my mother tongue.

It's easy in Rome to be lazy. There are so many expats here. Many of the shopkeepers speak some English because of all the tourists. The majority of my close Italian friends speak English.

I went to a party in Monti with a friend and her Italian friend. He said, "look around, this is why your Italian isn't stronger." Almost everyone at the party was American.

That same night I went to a good-bye party for an British-American friend who was returning to NYC. That crowd was the exact opposite, all Italian. This friend was in Italy for only a few months and spoke better Italian than I did (I had been here three years!) She's also a writer, writing in English. I can't use that as an excuse anymore.

My Italian friends switched to English because I asked them to or they sensed my frustration. I'm concerned that I sound like an idiot in Italian, so I clam up. I should just plow ahead and speak. Italian grammar is no joke. Even very well educated Italians sometimes misuse the subjunctive. I can't believe that tense shows up in childrens' books. grrrrrr

I know some expats get annoyed if you speak or try to speak Italian with them. I guess they think, "We're American why the heck aren't we speaking English?"

Well, I'm going to try an experiment, more immersion. It can't be full immersion because of the work I do. If I'm not working on my book, scripts, blog, etc. I need to be writing, reading, and speaking Italian.

Last week I watched THE GOOD WIFE dubbed and with Italian subtitles. About twenty minutes in I switched to original language and keep the subtitles. It was so much easier to enjoy the show because I didn't have to concentrate. After ten minutes I turned it back to Italian. I have to suck it up and stop taking the easy way out.

I wonder if it's useful to watch American shows dubbed in Italian, but with the English subtitles.

Anyway, I'm going to try this experiment until the end of the year. I'm curious to see if I can actually speak this language well or if I'm a lost cause.

It might mean stepping back a little from the expat scene. I'm not talking about my close friends who happen to be expats, but the larger circle of acquaintances.

My expat friends are fluent. Most of them are married to Italians and/or work with Italians. All of them have said this level of Italian is the hardest to get through.

The last two weeks, since starting my internship, I've spoken more Italian than in all of 2011. Today when I turned on the Italian news, I noticed my comprehension was better. Small steps.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Snapshot Rome - Surprised by some sheep

I was jogging on the road that leads to the entrance of the Catacombe di San Callisto off Via Appia Antica. Usually, I'm on the look out for tour buses and bicyclists. Suddenly, a few sheep zipped across the road.

The lambs are too cute for word. It's hard to believe a flock this size is so close to the Historic Center.







Thursday, October 20, 2011

How playing tennis again made me stop hating my body (most of the time)

I recently started playing tennis after fourteen years. While I like to think I play like this person,


photo: Sports Illustrated 2008 Wimbledon.

I don't.

In fact, I'm terrible. Even when my coach (aka Il Maestro) gives me clear changes to win points, I can't score. I completely fall apart during a match. That said, yesterday he told me I have improved since we started. The drills are working.

I love tennis, but I did not love the tennis skorts. I was seriously considering wearing track pants on the bus/metro then changing at the courts. I didn't want people to see my legs.

I never wear skirts above a certain length as my thighs are very muscular. At this age I doubt I would wear a mini-skirt anyway, but even in my 20's I didn't.

I hated having "thick" legs. I don't have cankles, but still. Finding jeans were a pain.

I wondered why I didn't have my mom's long lean legs. She 5'10, I'm 5'2. My dad is tall as well, but all the women in his family (who were tall except for one cousin who was 4'11) had athletic builds. In L.A. I tried all these different exercises, like pilates, to make my quads leaner. I would keep the resistance low during spinning classes.

In high school, one day after soccer practice, I was in the kitchen getting something out of the fridge. My mom, with her typical Caribbean bluntness, looked over and said, "Wow, you really have the Gibbs legs." THANKS MOM!

A funny thing happened as I got older. Because of the muscle tone, I look younger. When I was on the court, another player made a comment to my coach about me being a young player. I told him my age and he said, "Complimenti!!" He thought I was at least fifteen years younger. One friend in L.A. wanted to know how it was possible my butt was getting firmer as I aged. She asked me this question loudly in public.

I have friends who are dealing with some serious health issues, like cancer. How stupid am I to waste time complaining about my thick legs? So f-ing what if they have muscles? I'm healthy and those muscles help me move. I'd rather be fit than flabby. Just because someone is skinny, it doesn't mean they're healthy.

Living in Italy has a lot to do with my better attitude. In L.A. I felt like freaking Snuffleupagas, "Hiiiii, Big Bird," among all the size 0s. Yes, people here are slim too, yet it's not the same thing. The approach to food is completely different. Food is not an enemy here.

I got over my tennis skort fears (man, they are REALLY short). I wouldn't say I'm comfortable with my body all the time. During those moments I remember this kick ass NIKE commercial, throw on my tennis gear, and do my thing.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Spotlight on Lazio - wine, cheese, friends, and charity

Saturday night two of my favorite people in Rome, Katie Parla and Hande Leimer, hosted a wine tasting focusing on the Lazio region at the enoteca Il Bacocco in Trastevere.

The proceeds from the evening went to the food rescue charity A Chi Serve.

Saturday was a surreal day. The peaceful Occupy Rome protest turned violent once the Black Bloc showed up. The self-proclaimed anarchists have done this before. They hijack organized peaceful protests and then proceed to burn and break anything they can get their hands on.

The area around San Giovanni looks like a war zone. The cost of the damage is over 1.5 million euros. This is money that could be used for something else, especially during a budget crisis.

Despite the mayhem, there was a strong turnout.

Sommelier Hande gave a great presentation about the two wines we tasted, one white, one red. They went very well with the various cheeses and salami. Vincenzo Mancino of DOL-Di Origine Laziale donated the food. I must check out his store. I'm still thinking about the goat cheese.

We drank Marco Carpineti’s “Capolemole” Cori Bianco and L’Olivella’s “Quaranta/Sesanta” Rosso Lazio IGT.

Katie's excellent (and more detailed) post about the event is HERE. She has links to all the places that helped make Saturday a special evening. I hope Hande and Katie will organize more events like this in the future.








Saturday, October 08, 2011

Get Your Art On: Mario Testino "Todo o Nada"

I finally made it to this exhibit at the Fondazione Palazzo Ruspoli Memmo on Via del Corso. It opened in July and closes on November 23rd. The show is co-hosted by the foundations of Fendi, Gucci, and Valentino.

Testino is one of my favorite fashion photographers and I heard great things about the show. It did not disappoint. I really enjoyed it.

As we walked through the exhibit, my friends and I were talking about how celebrities have replaced models on fashion magazine covers.

When you look at the photographs, it's clear while this could be good for sales, artistically it's depressing, boring, and lazy.

Many actresses are drop-dead gorgeous, but they are not models. I know many people think anyone who is tall, and pretty can be a supermodel. Despite what reality shows say, that is not true.

There is something about the way the camera captures the faces of models that makes them stand out. Also, I'm not surprised many models used to be dancers. You do have to know how to move your body when you're posing for photos. Not all actresses have the physicality.

The exhibit was heavy on models, but there were a few actresses in the mix. It's no shock that Cameron Diaz's portrait was one of the most interesting. Cameron was a model.

Some of my favorite portraits were of Daria Werbowy. Stunning.

It was nice to see some of the ladies from the '80s, Naomi, Linda, Christy, Stephanie, and Cindy, represented. I miss that era.

I'm glad we're moving away from the "hanger" phenomenon. I disagree with the notion that famous models are too distracting for the clothes. Look at the '80s. Those model were super famous and yet you noticed what they were wearing on the runway, in ads, and editorials.

If you're going to be in Rome during the next few weeks and you're into photography and/or fashion, this show is fantastic.

Here's a little video about the opening:

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Hermès exhibit... sigh.

There was a short-term Hermès exhibit at the Chiostro del Bramante in Rome to celebrate the opening of the new men's store on Via Campo Marzio.

It ended on Sunday. My friend C. and I made it just in time on Saturday.

I don't remember how old I was when I first became aware of Hermès. I walked into their store in St. Martin one day during a summer trip to see my grandparents.

The store was incredible. The salespeople were so chic and very nice.

My friends know I'm somewhat obsessed with Hermès bags. One friend even sends me snapshots of Birkins she sees in Rome.

I don't own a single one. Years ago I saw a used Kelly bag at a yard sale in Georgetown. I could kick myself for not buying it. Then again I was a junior congressional aide on The Hill making less than 18k a year. I doubt I could afford the bag.

I still can't afford the bags. But I can appreciate them from afar.

The exhibit was fantastic. Well curated and the write-ups were beautiful. I know they were writing about leather and bags, but it was poetry.

We were able to touch the leather samples. Like butter.

There was one display comprised of only Kellys and Birkins. My friend asked me if I was okay because it looked like I was hyperventilating.

They had bags on display that were over hundred and fifty years old. The level of craftsmanship is unreal.

The company was founded in 1837 as a harness workshop and is still family owned. However, the big multinational LVHM wants like to buy them out.

Hermès bags are made by hand, unlike some other luxury brands.

A craftsperson works on one bag at a time.


C. used to ride horses. We spent a lot of time in this room.


When I see this picture I crack up. This was in a little room to the right of the big Kelly/Birkin display. As we walked toward the room, we heard this smacking noise. It was a couple completely making out behind the display. The crazy thing is, they didn't stop when we walked past them. We were in that room for a while and when we walked out, they were still making out. Really, folks, in a museum?!


Hermès store Rue du General De Gaulle. Marigot, St. Martin, French West Indies. Where the love affair began.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Flashback Friday - The Rascals - "A Beautiful Morning"

Grazie Dio it's Friday.

This week was rather... unpleasant. I had a stupid cold and heard frustrating news from LaLa land.

I woke up this morning and my cold was finally gone.

I cut through Doria Pamphili Park after an errand. I was so freaking glad to be back outside after spending all week stuck indoors.

The weather in Rome has been spectacular lately. Cool in the mornings and evenings, not too warm during the day.

I plan to enjoy as much time as possible outdoors before the rainy season hits.

The interview I did with Blackexpat.com is up. HERE it is.

I love this song. Buon weekend!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Italian Driving School Diaries - A Cinquecento, La Spezia, tears, and the Autostrada

View of Lerici from La Spezia. It's a very beautiful place. However, the drive to get there was not!

Seriously, what was I smoking when I decided to drive to Piemonte?

I stopped in La Spezia to meet my friend Megan for lunch. When I stepped out of the car, my hands were literally shaking.

One friend back in America had suggested I rent an automatic. She said driving on the Autostrada was super stressful and she has been driving stick/manual all her life.

As I struggled to get from Termini Station to the Autostrada, I was close to hyperventilating. If leaving the Center was such a nightmare, what the heck was going to happen to me on the Autostrada?

I kept stalling out. I got lost. It was a big mess. I finally made to the Autostrada and it was fine. In Italy people use the left lane correctly... to pass. I stayed on the right and nobody tailgated me.

Once I got off the Autostrada to get to Megan's, all hell broke loose. Roundabouts, hairpin turns, steep hills, I was in tears.

After a relaxing lunch and gelato (thanks Megan!), I told myself to get it together. I put on Amy Winehouse's FRANK and continued on my journey.

Got lost again. I was driving toward Milano. Once I turned around and got back on the Autostrada, I thought everything would be okay.

Nope. I was wrong. I finally arrived in Acqui Terme with its zillion roundabouts in the Historic Center and ended up in a parking lot. My friend's B&B was nowhere in sight.

I called. They were probably wondering how the heck I missed their road. Hello, I've been there before. I turned around and later saw my friend's husband on the road leading to the B&B.

I know people have had trouble getting up their driveway. It's very steep. I was told to put the car in 1st gear and don't stop. If I was too nervous to try, they would do it.

After driving for hours, I decided to go for it and made it up the bloody hill. When I pulled up, everyone started clapping. I basically rolled out of the car. I was so happy to get out of it.

After a long shower and a couple glasses of chilled wine, I was fine.

The next day I did tell my friends I didn't think I could deal with driving back.

However my return trip was a breeze, until I got to Rome. Sigh.

I missed the turn for Vatican City and ended up God knows where.

When I finally arrived in my neighborhood, I double parked and gave the man who "helps" people park a few euros. I ran to my place to dropped off my things.

I returned to my car and then zipped around the Center and even Piazza Venezia like butter. Dropping the car off was a lot easier than picking it up. Could be because I had just driven more hours in one weekend trip than in the previous two years.

A few days later I bumped into my driving instructor, Bruno. He asked me how it went. He said he was proud of me. That warmed my heart.

I'm glad I did it. I do feel more comfortable now with a stick.

I get the Autogrill hype. It's not the Italian 7/11. It's on a whole different level.

Next time I rent a car to go out of town, I might get the car from the airport or Villa Borghese to avoid the Center and EUR. Even for experienced drivers getting in and out of Rome is confusing.

The drive, except when I was freaking out, was beautiful. I loved seeing how the terrain changed from Lazio, to Tuscany, to Liguria, and then Piemonte.

The Fiat 500 is a great little car. Excellent mileage. I don't know what type of engine I had. Mine did not have a lot pick up. Merging onto the Autostrada from a gas station was a little stressful.

Nice ride.


I would like to test the Mini Cooper at some point.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Friends, Cookies and Campari – Rome’s Fashion Night Out.

Italian Vogue's editor Franca Sozzani


The delicious cookies given out at Gente on Via Babuino


Cool display at the Campari party which was held in the "Roman Holiday" palazzo on Via Margutta


A model in the archway on Via Margutta.


Cocktails!


Leaving the party. Next stop, Stella McCartney.

Last Thursday night, Rome held her version of Vogue’s Fashion Night Out. Anna Wintour, the EIC of American Vogue, started the event a few years ago to kick off Fashion Week in New York City.

There are rumors this year will be the last one in NYC, but nothing has been confirmed.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. Two of my fashion loving friends met up with me at Miu Miu and off we went.

Courtney invited a young Italian friend of hers to join us. She was super sweet and it was interesting to hear the POV of an early 20-something. I don’t know if she realized all of us were technically old enough to be her mom. Heh.

Just as I arrived at Miu Miu I saw Franca Sozzani, the EIC of Italian Vogue. She was surrounded by a ton of press.

The night was a blast. We kept bumping into friends. I couldn’t believe how crowded the streets were. Red Valentino served the best cocktails.

Several stores hired DJs. The Stella McCartney store had a hot popcorn machine. Erica heard a rumor they also had cupcakes, but by the time we got there we didn’t see any.

Gente on Via Babuino served cookies (they were very cute and delicious), prosecco (in nice glasses) and appetizers. It was my first time in that store. Oh Mio Dio, why did I do that to myself? They sell Repetto ballet flats and other wonderful things.

One thing that jumped out at me was seeing so men out and about with their girlfriends/wives. People really got into the spirit of the evening.

Some of the proceeds were donated to the Red Cross. This would explain why we saw so many nurses wearing vintage Red Cross uniforms. Fashion + function.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Flashback Friday - Earth, Wind & Fire - "September"

Last night I had my weekly conference call with my manager. She had some not great news regarding one of my projects.

I started to go down that negative road.

Then I had to run out the house to meet my friends for Rome's Fashion Night Out. One them asked me how things were going and I vented for a minute.

I stopped and not just because I had a delicious prosecco in my hand. I realized earlier in the week I had received excellent feedback about another project. I barely spoke about it. Instead I was zeroing in on cryptic comments made by one person.

Like I said, I'm trying to Live More and Worry Less. Instead of doing the whole "woe is me, why aren't things better?" rant, I focused on the moment and had a blast with my friends.

This morning I ran to Borghese Park and heard this song on the way up the hill.

Wait, I'm confused by those things in the video. Right, they are instruments!

Earth, Wind & Fire had a killer horn section. They are one of my favorite bands OF ALL TIME. Their outfits in this video are a trip. I love the enthusiasm of the bass player.

Have a great weekend.

Friday, August 12, 2011

When in Rome...

Well, at least my blog will be on vacation for Ferragosto.

I have to finish my novel and work on a TV pitch. No vacation for me.

My neighborhood is very popular with tourists and drunk American exchange students so it won't be as quiet as other areas in Rome.

Most of my favorite places are closed until September and the majority of my friends are out of town as well.

This summer has been stressful, but I'm optimistic something great is going to happen soon.

Buon Ferragosto! See in you September.



Thursday, August 04, 2011

Snapshot Rome - The GAP



Shot on Via del Corso. I'm very curious to see how the clothes in this store will differ from the clothes Stateside. The cuts will definitely have to be smaller. Baggy/loose clothes are not popular here. Even hip-hop loving teenagers don't do baggy.

The last few times I've been in the GAP (at the Grove or Century City in L.A.) were disappointing. The GAP used to be the place to get good, well made basics at decent prices. Now, it's maybe one step above Forever 21. The clothes look and feel cheap. What the heck happened? That said, GAP BODY is fantastic. They have the best cotton underwear, PJs, etc.


UPDATE:
A friend just Tweeted me to say, the GAP opened on Sunday. The cuts are smaller. She bought eleven shirts. Clothes were made in Turkey and Egypt instead of Vietnam.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Italian Driving School Diaries - Back behind the wheel

I'm going to sign up for Rome's Car Sharing program. Since I haven't been behind the wheel in Rome in over two years, I thought it would be a good idea to take two refresher lessons with my former instructor, Bruno.

The good news: I didn't forget how to drive a stick/manual transmission.

The bad news: I get very nervous driving in Rome.

The combination of driving stick (which is new to me) and not being used to scooters or the massive number of pedestrians freaks me out.

In L.A. we don't have to deal with pedestrians. Maybe a few downtown or near Hollywood/Highland, but nobody walks in L.A. You could be driving down Beverly Blvd in the middle of rush hour and count the number of people walking on the sidewalks with one hand.

In Rome, it's a different story.

Bruno said, "have no fear." I know he's right. I hope in time I will get used to driving in Rome.

One my friends who lived in L.A and N.Y.C. before moving to Rome a few years ago, drives like a native. She's going to let me practice driving with her car. I was told (warned) I must drive around Piazza Venezia.

Great.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Are you married?"

The following conversation took place this morning at my local supermeracto. Translated as best I can from Italian:

Cold cuts counter man after he gave me my salami di Napoli order: "Are you married?"

Me: "No."

CCM: "No?! How is that possible?"

Me: "We talked about this last year."

CCM: "Well, I thought maybe things had changed. We should go out."

Me: "I have a boyfriend." (I don't)

CCM: Looks confused as if my reply is completely irrelevant to our conversation. After a beat he says, "Oh, okay, well then you let me know when you want to go out. Understand?"

Me: "Uhmmm" (He spoke so quickly. I wasn't sure what he said.)

CCM: "Yes, you say, 'Francesco (not his name) let's go out.' Okay? Understand?"

Me: "Oooh Okay, have a nice day."

CCM: "You too, beautiful."


Trust me, this NEVER happened to me at Gelsons, or Bristol Farms supermarkets in L.A. Last year Francesco gave his number, after I told him I had a boyfriend. He said we could still practice Italian. Bwahahah

I thought it would be awkward to go back to my favorite supermarket when I didn't call him. But, he was perfectly professional.

I was caught off guard this morning. A year later and Francesco is still trying to get his mack on? Living here cracks me up.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Flashback Friday - TLC - "No Scrubs"

There were a bunch of videos in the early - mid 90's that had the same look as this video. Silver background, fish-eyed lens, etc.

It's a shame the members of TLC went through so much drama. Just as Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes was getting her life back on track, she died in a car accident during a family retreat in Honduras.

I thought of this song the other day when some random dude sitting in the passenger seat of a car tried to holla at me. His lines were weak. No scrubs! heh

Have a great weekend.