I went to La Standa to pick up a few things today. I try not to go because of the long lines and high prices. "Hey, they've got tortilla bread here," an American girl yelled to her friend at the other end of the aisle. Not many people yell in grocery stores unless there's a fire or robbery. Even though Italians can be loud at times, they don't normally yell in enclosed public spaces unless it's at their kids and even then, not normally in front of other people.
I thought about telling the "loud one" that La Standa has some really good tortillas in the refrigerated section, called "piadine." Dave and I found these fantastic tortillas, which are a specialty from Romagna. Because Dave loves Mexican food, we've tried pretty much every brand of tortillas in Florence and these are the best ones!
But, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I didn't want to tell her. I don't want anyone else who heard her yell a few minutes earlier to think that I was one of "them." Unfortunately, Americans have a bad reputation for being loud and obnoxious: they get drunk in bars, hang out in discos, and walk around in packs.
As I continued shopping, the girl's friend ended up right next to me picking out chocolate. "They don't have the one I want," she whined. I stood there trying to find some "cioccolato fondente" to make a chocolate cake for Dave. The girl reached in front of me to get a bar of chocolate and gave me a slight nudge. I looked at her, but she didn’t look at me or even say anything. "I got some chocolate, I hope it's OK," she said to her friend as she walked away while I kept on watching her.
My guilt subsided; they don’t need to know about the tasty tortillas.
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