“Pasta for One” is my sordid, trivial, funny yet sarcastic,
and jaded tale of a 30-something x-pat female living in the south of Italy
along with general strangeness, a “pazzo” jealous ex-boyfriend, strange
cultural curiosities, and former neighbors I’d love to throw sticks at. (really
Regurgutating the beginning…
People often asked me why I came here to Italy. Instead of getting into
some long and boring tale about how I lost the best job – as a traffic
coordinator in Film Distribution International, and the best boss in the world
(Scott Cole – whom I adored), how there are no jobs in my country, and how my
love life had been a series of pathetic disasters… I simply tell these
“I’m here for the food.” But technically the last straw could have
very well been because of a computer geek that I met on an internet dating
site, named Travis. I, living in Toronto, him from Rhode Island. We had spoken
on the phone for a few weeks then he ended up driving up one weekend for our
first meeting. From the morning after he arrived he got progressively weirder.
Perhaps, for starters it could have been the bad haircut he got Saturday
afternoon by the stylist I recommended, but as Sunday finally came round and as
he stood on my front porch ready to go car keys in hand, there came the line…
“let’s be friends.”
As I had had enough of dating mishaps and relationship disasters with my
own countrymen, it didn’t make the slightest difference this one happened to be
American. I felt like shit. I called for re-inforcements in the form of 2
members of the opposite sex: Level-headed Wayne, my pal/former co-worker (my
living encyclopedia to film), and Green
– my infinitely cool, rootbeer-coolwhip cocktail drinking fabulously Jewish and
very funny friend and sometime-lover , who once serenaded Bob Dylan. Both of
which listened attently to my pathetic sob-story and assured me it was HIM not
I think it was when Wayne and I were walking through the University of
Toronto grounds talking as usual about our old long lost film jobs and how
everything now sucked (“the end of an era” we always said) and while holding therapeudic
joint (my ‘chill out’ solution to cushioning my rejection) in hand, when I
finally turned to him and said… “I gotta get outta here.”
Yes escape… but where? USA?
Germany? France? Italy?
Why not?… I had stayed there for one summer when I was 15… then
later briefly when I was 22. Great food and hot looking guys… fuel for life. It
wasn’t like I was totally green to their ways. Then it dawned on me…The MSN
Italy chat-room, -What better place to
find out about Italy than from REAL Italians? A fateful decision no less, as
this is where I met GM. and continued a 2 year+ roller-coaster ride
relationship of the sweetest highs and the most horrible lows, and overflowing
with obsession, control, desperation, lonliness, emotional devastation… and the
merger that finally ended very, VERY badly.
These are my little stories of life as a “straniera”…
My first writing was in August of 2004. I had reached a level of desperation I hadn’t anticipated… Other writings Between August 2004 and January 2008 – have mysteriously disappeared.
this is my life…
04 Jan 2008
It’s all about the sheets
Colossal headache. Not like a wine-head headache although I did smoke enough cigarettes and drink enough of that cheap magnum of white the B&B guests left last month.
Got yet another visit last night from G. at 2am where I was forced to discuss “my favourite bed sheets” which weren’t even my favourite because I don’t even have a favourite. Only that they could very well be the sheets that were on the bed at the time of the infamous “incident.” What could I say but “What’s with the sheets already???… enough about the fucking sheets, it’s 2am!” I also wasn’t smart enough to hide the book I was reading – Lady Chatterly’s Lover. I had a student last year that was doing a thesis on it and seeing I had never read it I was intrigued. Luca, my neighbor that constantly brings me junk from his garage – finally got it right this time and brought me a decent lot with a bunch of other classics last week. But again should have hid it. I knew in the back of my mind that if it was left lying around it would generate a stupid comment in the way of something like “oh you are reading this? does it remind you of your LOVER?” ya… bullseye.
But what is the infamous “incident?”…
We were broken up (me and the G.)- in my head, for real this time. It finally sunk in (that with no sexual contact in 4 months – my choice, I held strong). I got the speech – “I don’t want to have a relationship with you, cand’t offer you fidelity, don’t love you”, blablabla. and?… what should I do with that? So I met someone else. Antonio, who now I don’t even want to speak to . I call him “Stronzo Organico” – SO for short, which roughly translates to the organic asshole – as he was a Jesus looking zen-loser granola , unreliable, and sleazy-slimy player. Prior to my enlightenment of this fact – one night I cancelled some plans with the EX because SO just showed up at my house, and wanted to “talk” he was seemingly regretful he hadn’t called me and said he felt like kind of a jerk and I must have thought he was a real asshole bla, bla, bla, (he had been working on me to sleep with for weeks and I wouldn’t put out). I finally caved (a colossal misjudgement) and then G. the ex showed up at 2am while the granola jerk was still in my bed sleeping. BAD SCENE, and I am still dealing with the fallout. Wake ups and intrusionsare at all hours. Flashlights pointed at me in the dark while I am sleeping, and bizarre wide-eyed interrogations. The EX claims I forced him to make all those anti-love and committment declarations. Strange, as I don’t own a gun and couldn’t have stuck one to his temple at anytime.
SO called me a few weeks ago – a month after the “incident” as he got my new number from my friend Antonella (by mistake). He wanted to get together. I said no. I could have really laced into him as he hadn’t called me much after ‘the incident’ and kind of dicked me around. He knew things were bad as G. had cancelled my cel phone sim card (as it was in his name). SO was so casual about the situation like : “oh hey, ya, is the situation ok now or still kind of annoying with your Ex?” I didn’t get into it and just said things were difficult at this time for me, he asked if I still had his number – I said yes. Even tho I intentionally erased it.
10 Jan 2008
fridgebox or shoebox?
Apartment hunting is worse than a vivisection – no wait, that’s dating Italian men and being stalked by your ex who happens to be Italian. Anyways saw 2 places today near the Duomo and the other near the old port, both of which would be less comfortable than a refridgerator box. I was recently asked by a friend about my quest for an apartment: aka. Project liberation from insanly jealous Italian ex-boyfriend whom I’m now calling “Mr. Roper”. To this I replied… No new place: They all suck. There’s ALWAYS SOMETHING REALLY WRONG.
Smaller than my place and 200euro more than I am paying. One entire wall in each room facing the outside plus the ceilings are exhibiing brown stains with complimenting black mold. Humidity damage or Contemporary Art?
The prison. Near a noisy elevator and groundfloor hallway. Kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom with iron-barred windows facing the street/ and one foot above street level. Located on a narrow street opposite a train station, plus breathtaking view of passerbys’ ankles. The next tenant will surely go berserk one day and open fire in the Posta Italiane (Italian Post Office), it’s only a matter of time.
Outside area reeked of cat shit, and a virtual obstacle course, no elevator – 5 floor walk up, bedroom can only fit child-size bed, big brown stains and humidity damage on walls accesorized by posters of Che Guevera pasted to the wall. Furry dust was left on the stringless guitar that was nailed to the wall for addeded decorative effect. I should have asked if the place came with a dusty hash-bong.
Cat shit, dog shit, pigeon shit, and neighbors that throw shit.. need I say more?
A refridgerator box would be more spacious.
WAY UP on a hill and I’d need to be an Olympic Athelete to get up there on my bike (THAT I could live with), but WAIT… big and cheap. I said to the Landlady I would take it , but some cheap cow that complained about the price, and that her husband knew – got the place instead.
So can I consider renovating the place I got to make it more livable? Which can be possible if Mr. Roper stops bargin in and leaves me the fuck alone. New kitchen and some new bedroom furniture maybe? Shopping and shiny new things to make me happy? Let’s see shall we.
14 Jan 2008
oddites with warm feet
Last week I saw an old couple in their mid to late 70’s holding hands, and walking outside near my building. Normally I wouldn’t have noticed them, but as they were both wearing their slippers – I did. I see oddities all the time here and I just write off most of them. This one was like, ok – they probably live in the hood and just ran out to grab some pasta or something. But 2 days later I saw them again in the centre near city hall (not exactly in the hood) and still wearing their slippers. Most people from my part of the world would see a person walking the streets in slippers and would say that’s wacked and automatically assume that person has alzheimers or is a wandering mental patient. But in this part of the world – a couple at that, and not a huge deal. I wonder if one had to convince the other? “Come on dear, they’re comfortable – let’s just wear them out- who cares if people see us and think we’re werid… we love each other and that’s all that’s matters.” Cute improbable fantasy huh? Ya, hey probably just got too comfortable and forgot.
17 Jan 2008
I’m not sleeping well, aside from the fact the wac- job continues to enter my apartment after midnight, scare the shit out of me and interrogate me in the dark with flashlights. Therefore I am having nightmares that leave me feeling shaken for the whole day. This week I had a dream about being back in Canada (semi-broke as usual) and having half of my bottom teeth rot and fall out and in desperation begging my dad to give me some money to go to the dentist (he won’t say yes or no just keeps talking nonsense like he can’t hear me), then in desperation when I try and call the dentist I can never get anyone on the phone to make an appointment. In the last 2 years I have had a lot of these dreams about my teeth rotting and /or falling out. Interpretation???… hey genius, maybe it’s simple, you know you have a cavity… maybe you just need to go see a dentist?
If the dentists here are anything like the doctors with their floral diagnosis like “you toook too much wind” – I may be in deep shit.