Though I’ve never mounted a production of Two Gentlemen of Verona, and giving no thought to the actual feasibility, I would make sure the Two Gentlemen were like Statler and Waldorf, but I digress.
However, this duality seems present in my now-two-weeks-old Italian existence. People either come up to me, asking questions entirely in rapid-fire Italian leaving me dumbly blinking and, for the first time in my life, unable to give directions. Directions are my schtick. Or just when I get all confident that I blend, I’ll go up to a counter with a bottle of Coca Light and the shopkeeper won’t even bother telling me the price in Italian, he’ll just show me the receipt with the number of Super Dollars (€) required, printed on it.
Despite not being able to give directions, let alone ask for them, I had a friend stopping through Verona this week, and what better time to wander off onto the Italian rail system. Did I manage to purchase tickets and change trains twice and actually find him on the other end? YES I DID. Was I impressed enough with my feat that I haven’t stopped talking about it yet? SEE ABOVE.
Verona is gorgeous enough that I wouldn’t have wanted to see it with anyone but someone who takes pictures for a living. Without much plan (because clearly I never make them) we set off for the big sights with a “surely you can’t miss a 20,000 seat Arena made in the year 30 A.D.” Which I’m now realizing, if you believe the hype, that Jesus was actually still alive then. Heckyes biblical vomitoriums.
If vomitoriums are my #1 favorite historical reference, moats are totally next. The Castelvecchio was wandered through, the views stunning and exploited photographically, and…okay, yes, there may have been novelty pictures taken with the treasure trove of medieval art held inside. We’re horrible people.
Though I don’t speak Italian well enough to ask directions to Juliet’s house (even though we ended up accidentally walking past it, such is fate and unfortunate poisoning) I can order at a restaurant like…enough of a local that it’s like WHAT IS OLIVE GARDEN DOING? NotFoodispitaliano.
Stick with me kids, you won’t starve.
After lunch, an event in itself, we walked outside into the most surreal and gorgeous light in the history of sun hitting the earth. It sparkles, that city. It might be the reflected romance of the millions of “R + J 4EVA” graffitis scrawled outside of Juliet’s house.
It makes you sort of believe in love, this place.
And it really makes you believe in olive oil.