Wednesday, August 9
I need valium?
Four American tourists marched into the boutique. They did not aknowlege me. The women started violently rifling through the clothes in a way that made me fear for the safety of the items. The men, sweating heavily made themselves comfortable on the sofa.
“PUCCI?” asked one woman rather loudly, holding up a bikini, looking in my direction, but not at me.
“Yes” I answered.
“REAL?” she wanted to know, loudly.
“Yes, real,” I replied, wondering if she could atually string two words or more together.
“SALE?” She yelled. I hesitated, slightly shocked that she considered it normal to yell one word questions at people like that.
“SALDO?” She tried in Italian, badly. She pronounced is 'soldow'.
“Yes,” I replied in my best English accent, “there is a discount of 40% on all clothes.”
She didn't make any sign to show that she had heard or understood me, so I sat down behind the counter.
One of the men heaved himself off the sofa and came over, holding out a bottle of water.
“Aqua?” He said to me.At least he wasn't shouting.
“Yes,” I replied, “aqua.”
“No,” he said, a bit louder. “Aqua...water..” he made a drinking motion with his hand. I watched, trying to figure out what he was trying to tell me.
“Aqua, yes, is water.” I told him.
“Aw, shit!” he said, slamming his meaty hand down on the counter top, “she doesn't understand me!” He told the others.
“ Well, if you asked me properly, instead of one word at a time, I might be able to help,” I piped up.
“ You speak English?”He asked me, doubtfully.
“ What do you think we're talking in? I obviously speak English much better than you do, look I can string a whole sentance together without shouting!”
They didn't find that funny.
“Ooooh, look who's feisty!” jeered the woman, reminding me vividly of the stereotype bitchy schoolgirl from any 1980's American highschool film.
They started stalking out the shop,telling me that I was very rude and, so had lost their custom.
“Thank god,” I muttered, just a bit too loudly on purpose.
For some reason they all banged on the window at me as they went past, whether to frighten me or to attempt to break the glass, I don't know. I dismissed the incident, until five minutes later when they were back. Another loud bang on the window. I looked up, the woman was standing there, hands spread on the glass, leering at me. Now what does she want? I thought to myself. She came to the doorway, and yelled at the top of her foghorn voice, “YOU NEED TO GET SOME VALIUM!”
I wish I could have replied with a smart cut down, but she was already prancing away. I yelled out,“You need to get a life!” But, I was left unsatisfied, sure if I could have had a few seconds longer, I would have found something much wittier to yell at her.
I picked up a cloth and some spray and started cleaning away the sweaty handprints on the windowpane...
at 1:42 PM