Friday night, we had dinner at the home of a real Italian, from Italy; and his lady, a real Iowan. We had a wonderful time, eating a delicious meal seemingly tossed together with the greatest ease, drinking red wine, and allowing a vast selection of digestifs to pour down our throats. To aid digestion, of course. Really. (We provided the cake.)
Naturally, being a fauxtalian, I observed our host closely for hints. Here is what I noticed: that our Italian friend seemed to pass through dinner, conversation, and life surrounded by a cloak of ease. I do not mean that he doesn't work hard. I mean that he seems to know how to leave his cares behind at the end of the day, to keep from getting too worked up about the foolish aggravations of life, and to smile and enjoy a glass of wine. As a result, he seems to be wonderfully accepting and welcoming to a vast swath of people, some of whom (based on stories I've heard) are folks I would find intolerably difficult. But he can share a cigar with the difficult people and find amusement in their idiosyncracies.
But mostly, we just had fun. We were told upon leaving that the next dinner would be at another Italian's home. They revered the other Italian's cooking skills. He was sick and could not make the party Friday.
6 months ago