Unfortunately, I have zero pictures from this past weekend, which is extremely strange because I’m a picture taking fool, but sometimes I think when you are really in a moment you don’t need a picture because the memory will last forever and pausing to take a picture might actually ruin the moment. Unless you’re a blogger and people get bored by posts with no pictures. So I’ll add stock pictures I’ve taken… is that cheating?
On Saturday night, Claudia took us to another small restuarant she goes to often near the Colleseum. It was a simple meal, pizza and wine, but it was wonderful, good friends, good conversation, good food. Afterwards, she asked Dare and I if we’d like to join her going out with her friends. Of course the answer was yes. We met up with her friend Angelo, and then we all went to a cool area in Rome thats known for being more open minded and free spirited and is a mecca for all kinds of artists and musicians. We went to a small bar where we met up with their other friends, sat on the patio, and drank vino brulee. I had never heard of this before, but its a sweet, mulled wine with cloves and cinnamon. And it’s warm. It was definitely different, but good, something you’d want to drink while sitting in front of a fire on a cold night. Or sitting on a patio with a bunch of really nice Italian people and one British girl in Italy. After a couple hours there we went to another bar; this place had such a cool feel. On the front part it seemed like a coffee shop thats kind of hip but comfy, that serves booze. They were playing really random oldies, it was super eclectic. Then you walk through a hallway that has big plastic sheets, you know, like the ones at the butchers section in a grocery store, and you’re in this crowded, hot room full of people dancing to jazzy/reggaey type music. I honestly felt like I was in a movie, it was so amazing. So many places that I go to in Rome I think to myself “This place is way too cool for me.” In this case, it was too cool for me, but all of the people that I was with are so wonderful and inviting I didnt even care,
We stayed out until 5 in the morning, just in time to get Dare back to the B&B to leave for the airport! I went with Claudia and Angelo to stay at Angelo’s home in Prima Porta, a little town in the province of Rome but outside the city center. It is in the country, surrounded by farms, and very quiet compared to the constant noise of Rome. Angelo is also a wonderful person. He, like me, loves to cook. He works in a gelateria owned by the people I will be renting a room from for the rest of the week, and cooks for an aperitivo at a bar a few times a week. An aperitivo is a wonderfully Italian concept; at a bar, they will set up a buffet of food for the patrons to eat while they drink and socialize. I’m not sure if its 100%, but the aperitivo that Angelo does is free of charge. Free food and drinks? Yes please!! He and a few friends have also created a website that compiles both their recipes and user submitted recipes, but the concept of the website is that it is only for single portion meals. Angelo told me that his philosphy is that most people who love to cook use their food as a way to show their love to others- family, friends, etc.- but he feels that its really beautiful when a person can show their love for themselves through food. He said that his goal one day is to have it both in Italian and in English, and he said that if I’m able to develop a recipe while I’m here in Italy for a single portion, he will help me write the post in Italian to submit to his website.
That weekend at Angelo’s was wonderful, he is such a great host, always making coffee (making Italian coffee is so much different than in America… what’s an electric coffee maker??), laying out a breakfast spread, and cooking us wonderful meals. Sunday night, his roommate came home, who then invited one of her friends. Claudia and Angelo both speak English, so they were happy to have conversations in English while also helping me begin to work on my Italian. During dinner, they for the most part stopped speaking English and chatted amongst eachother, which is good because the more time I spend with them the more my ear is able to pick up on extremely quickly spoken Italian. Claudia occaisonally paused to translate for me the more detail oreinted stories, but for the most part I just listened to this group of friends laugh and speak in one of the most beautiful, musical languages on the planet. It was a truly great weekend.