One of the perks of living in a little neighborhood away from the center is that you have the opportunity to meet some people, visit them a bunch of times, and then earn the right to call them your own. This post is about some of those delightfully special people.
We’ve got a little pasta shop where you can have a quick lunch of that-morning-made pasta with a sauce of your choice (which change regularly) for 5 euro. We have a cafe friend across the street who waves to you as you stroll by his shop. And helps get in touch with your landlord when you forget your keys. We have an organic grocer that has fresh bread at noon and homemade treats like ricotta pie and orange and chocolate muffins. And, we have a pizzeria.
The first time Rich and I went to our pizzeria, the time was 6:30pm. We had arrived in town fairly recently and weren’t yet accustomed to the late hour at which most Europeans eat their last meal of the day. Upon attempting to enter, we were informed that the doors would not be open until 7pm. Since that first fateful visit, La Antica Badia (or, “The Old Abbey” as it translates into English) has become one of our very favorite spots. For one, it has cheap and delicious pizza (5.50 euro for a pizza margherita). For two, it’s right up the street. And for three, we’ve now been there so many times we’re regulars. Regulars! A bar I’ve always wanted to reach with an establishment. Who knew all it would take would be moving to a foreign country?
It’s recently come to our attention that at our pizza spot, where we’re regulars, our favorite pizza man has no idea what my name is. As soon as we walk through the door, we hear, “Ciao Rich!” and then….nothing. Until recently. Recently, I was awarded the name, “Lady.” Now, when we walk through the door, it’s, “Ciao Rich, ciao Lady.”
My title as “Lady” was recently solidified when I was offered a “surprise.” A little tidbit: I LOVE surprises. They’re positive, more frequently than not, and they usually come with the connotation that someone knows you well enough to predict something you might like. Win.
Now you’re all wondering what the surprise was, aren’t you? Or you’re wishing I’d get to the point a bit sooner. Or both. So, the surprise. It was a pizza in the shape of a heart with an “R” made out of crust in the corner surrounded by olives. Now, you remember that
post from last week, right? The one about the delights of things often being just a bit lost in translation? Our favorite pizza man came out and said, “You like? Rich’s heart. You eat his heart.” Done. Rich’s heart was delicious.
There’s a second part to all of this business, isn’t there? Are you wondering if I’m a little offended that, after a year and a half of eating at this establishment, our favorite pizza man calls me, “Lady?” You know, the spark of feminism that ignites itself occasionally is slightly perturbed. But the foreign adventurer is charmed with having a nickname at one of our spots.