I miss instant coffee !

I miss instant coffee. Did I just admit that?

Moconna Indulgence, true blue  ‘Dingo Dust’. In Australia that was my drink of choice!

I don’t know if I actually miss the taste of the dried out, crushed down was once coffee beans but I miss the EASE and familiarity of the coffee.

I love the coffee culture here in Florence, it is SO civilised, any where, on any street corner is a bar, a place to walk up to the counter, get greeted with a ‘ciao’ and a smile and have a macchiato placed in front of you within the time it takes you to take your jacket off and arrange your shopping bags at your feet. After gazing at the gorgeous Florentine architecture that adorns all ceilings, you then pay your 1 euro and be on your way. Love it. So civilised.

I have perfected clothes and shoe shopping here as well,  that didn’t take long – although it can be daunting when you need a sloppy joe for your son to wear to school and you are faced with shop after shop of high end ladies fashions, the likes of Gucci, Prada and Chanel. There is a ‘shopping mall’ a 20 min bus ride out of town which I have been to twice. But I miss the EASE and familiarity of the shops back home, knowing exactly where to go to buy a particular item.

In Australia I had the most extensively stocked cupboard and fridge, it was wasteful and I vowed to never do it again. Here I have to put a lot of thought and effort into planning our meal for the day, yep meal -we only have one plus breakfast, got to love that. There is no car, no convenient supermarket the size of a football field, instead all my groceries are planned and purchased on the day, rain, hail or shine and carried home.

The decision to move to Italy was about the strong desire to create change, the old clichés that sound weak but really resonate…stepping out of our comfort zone, seeing what else is out there, follow your dreams,  stretching yourself – yeah, I know. But I love it. I thrive on goals and pushing that bit further. I am determined to learn the language although some days I seriously doubt that I ever will. But I do miss the ease and familiarity of the English language, being understood and being able to understand, something I truly took for granted until now. How hard must it be for those who aren’t in a situation like this by choice. Being able to read a notice on the street or the newspaper without a shocking Google translation, or directions on an item of food I have purchased from the store, or the foreign washing instructions on a new shirt – in every language but English.

Yesterday I was heading to my favorite bakery ‘ Vecchio Forno’ to buy my normal favorite bread. Just before I reached it a sign in another bakery caught my attention, never tried this place, so I decided to give it a go.  Now, traditional Tuscan bread has no salt and I find it very bland, so I have learnt to ask for Pane Pugliese which is a style of bread with salt. I walked into this new joint and am greeted by not 1 but 3 lovely ladies, and I proceed to ask for ‘pane con insalata’, bread with salad instead of bread with salt – sale. Not only didn’t they have any bread with salad but no bread with salt either.

During the week I received an invitation, in Italian, to go to the movies. I thought, on the 20th, no, it is tonight at 20 (meaning 8.00pm). I’ll learn!

I can be hard, it is tiring, it is what I asked for and when I get something right it is very rewarding and those moments put a great big smile on my face.

Would love to continue chatting but my macchiato is waiting! Caio

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4 thoughts on “I miss instant coffee !

  1. “But I do miss the ease and familiarity of the English language, being understood and being able to understand, something I truly took for granted until now” – oh yes, do I ever understand *that* and I’m sure every expat in a country with a language other than their native tongue can too!

    Enjoy your macchiato and the beautiful architecture!

  2. I was pretty proud of my French until I spent a little time in Paris. (Silly things like asking shopkeepers if they bought cheese, rather than if they sold it!) I can imagine how exhausting is to live in a different culture and learn a new language, but also wonderful!

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