If I didn’t laugh, I’d cry!

We were supposed to meet the Pazzo’s cousin Michele for dinner tonight.  At a pizza restaurant.  I was excited, Michele is a great person, he has a great sense of humour.  The kids were excited, pizza for dinner and proper Italian pizza at that.  The Pazzo was happy, what better way to finish a day of sight seeing (we went to the biggest single chambered cave in the world, Grotto Gigante), and visiting (we had lunch with Zia Gina and Zio Girgio, who are firm favourites with the kids), than with a pizza and a beer with the company of a rarely seen cousin.

We left early, just to make sure we could find it and to try to tire out the kids a bit, so they would sit down for dinner.  Because 1,000 steps (500 down and another 500 back up) wasn’t enough at the Grotto Gigante, they were getting restless and had started leaping around the apartment, so out we went.  We found the street, but still had half an hour til we were going to meet Michele.  The Pazzo said his stomach wasn’t feeling settled.  He looked a bit pale and wasn’t walking as fast as usual.  He wasn’t well.  We quickly dashed back to the apartment and gave him some panadol and a 20 minute lie down, but it wasn’t working.  He still felt a bit off.  So off I went with the kids.

We were late.  Michele hadn’t arrived yet, but he soon did.  We sat.  I explained.  Michele seemed ok with the situation.  We ordered.  The food arrived.  Yanni was eating slowly.  Ivy had nearly finished her pizza before Yanni had taken a bite. Something wasn’t right.  Jamie also wasn’t eating with any gusto.  He claimed his pasta wasn’t too spicy, but I’m not so sure.  I looked at Yanni, he was pale with red eyes.  He said he didn’t feel well.  Then he said he needed to go to the bathroom.  Off he goes.  While he is gone, I work out that Jamie is just tired and about to fall asleep.

Yanni returns from the bathroom, he’s a nice shade of pale green.  I can feel myself tensing up as he tells me he was unwell in the bathroom.  It’s time to go, but I haven’t finished eating, it really is a great pizza.  It’s hard to hurry and eat a pizza, it just doesn’t work in Italy!  Then Jamie falls asleep on the table.  I scoot our chairs together and let him lean on me.  His head ends up in my lap.  Yanni seems ok for the time being, so I finish eating.  

Ivy has Michele’s full attention.  He’s already found her a dessert menu, translated it into English and she’s chosen what she wants.  A Baba.  It’s ordered and arrives quickly, thank goodness, but the waitress sees it going to a child and informs us that is contains some alcohol.  Ivy has already tasted it by then and doesn’t like it anyway, so it’s mine.  It’s nice, but very alcoholic.  Gelato is the replacement order for her Baba.  It takes a while.  In the mean while Yanni packs his pizza into a carton.  

Finally, ice cream is eaten, the meal paid for, restaurant staff thanked and apologies and thanks offered to Michele, we can make our escape.  Michele as well.  I wake Jamie, which is no easy feat, but I can’t carry him.  We hightail it home.  Quickly escaping from one of the more embarrassing meals I’ve had, but if I didn’t laugh, I’d cry.  It really was an absurd situation, and it seemed to just get worse with every passing minute. Tomorrow will be interesting.  It might be a shopping day for Ivy, Jamie (he’ll be so excited) and me.

xxx Merri


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