I want to catch time, bottle it, take it out when I need it, inhale it slowly, sip it, devour it, but it runs from me, and although I sometimes see it just within my reach, it quickly disappears behind a tree, or I lose it in shadows. I haven’t forgotten about this space, place, to share and record. I just need to catch that time.
The nice thing about waiting is I’ve been collecting some more facts, observations about Rome, the Romans, life here in Italy:
If you have to park your car, you cannot slow down to try and find a spot. Nothing will annoy a Roman more. You must slam on your breaks and turn sharply, never missing a beat in your speed.
You cannot get blood taken at a doctor’s office. You must go to an official lab, which will then contact you with the results, which you must come and pick up yourself, and then deliver them back to your doctor.
Old Italians (or at least my friend’s grandmother) believe(s) that baring your stomach is why you get sick. You must protect the belly with wool at all times.
Italians are terrified of breezes. You will be on a bus, melting, but do not even think of opening a window or you will be scolded.
The mosquitoes are worse here than in Africa. It’s October and they are still swarming, eating.
Restaurants do not cut your pizza for you. If you order a pie, you must carve it up yourself.
Oranges ripen in winter, so as the city falls into a deep chill, the grey skies are dotted with orange balls.
Garbage is not picked up at your residence. You must take it to the communal trash cans scattered about the neighborhood.
The electricity is fragile. You must pick one appliance to use at a time or risk blowing a circuit.
Romans like their red meat raw. And I mean raw, not rare, raw.
Sometimes, after it rains, there will be a slight red dusting on everything. This is from the winds that come from Africa, dropping red dirt from the Sahara desert that it’s picked up along its way.