Monday, March 21, 2011
During the week we went out for lunch for my mother-in-law’s birthday. We had the small agriturismo to ourselves. There were ten of us in total, including two children, but the noise levels would have woken the dead. When Sicilians get together over a meal they tend to shout at each other across the table. Plus, there was music on too, which I discreetly turned down once I had spotted the remote. But bambino didn’t like it! His nonno said, ‘It’s because you don’t take him out!’ what? I said, he’s out every day of the week. ‘Yes, in the outdoors, but not in noisy restaurants.’ Well, we’re in a different caffè every day of the week, where bambino is greeted by all (shouting ‘che bello’ into his little face) but apparently they are not noisy enough. Noise training is what my bambino needs. I see. … This is the third day in a row we have had lunch all together and the noise levels are getting to me too. At one point I ask the 5 year old does he not have a book to read. He and the three year old are running riot around the restaurant. There’s a difference: at home I think parents would usually have some game for the children – colouring books etc to keep the kids quiet. But here no such effort is made, so the kids end up whining in their parents’ laps when they are exhausted.