When I came to Italy in 2007 I worked as a lifesaver in Bibione. My purpose was to Just to get in touch with Italians, live, work and be with them in real and sometimes dangerous situations. My intention was to experience real and daily life to find out if it would work to live – me a German, straight and ambitious gadabout – together with Italian people in this wonderful land missing the opportunity to live almost one year longer when they use the blinker while driving around a roundabout.
So sometimes for survival reason I had to visit the supermarket to feed my Sunday morning habits: Sunday’s breakfast is dedicated to scrambled eggs. This is the type of food habit makes me want to eat a lot during a single meal and therefore reminds me of those occasions during the holidays when every grandma, auntie or mother-in-law cooks big amounts of food and at the table ask you: “Would You like to try this one?” Oh boy, you need to have food, I cooked all the morning!” “This is good food, we have been eating this type of food since the beginning of time” – and this are the type of questions that a person can answer with a polite refuse… Until the final strike when they ask you: “You don’t like it?” and at this point you can only accept to eat more food.
So one day I went to the supermarket and I asked the saleslady where I could find eggs. I wanted wonderful, big Italian eggs imported from near Austria. She answered: “The white ones are up there, the black ones are after the second row right to the left.” I was impressed – next big Italian invention after da Vinci’s are black eggs, available for everyone in the supermarket. Germans are building cars that last for one million kilometers and have created x-ray or cash&carry-markets; but Italians have black eggs.
Shocked by this revelation I asked: “Excuse me, do you sell black eggs in Italy?” Where are they coming from?.” Suddenly the saleslady started laughing, she was laughing so hard that I thought she would start rolling on the floor. At that point two other customers after hearing her laugh came up to see what I did to her. They asked me what happened so I told them how she started laughing on her own and how I wasn’t responsible of her reaction. I even tried to explain myself to them saying that all I asked for was an indication of where to find eggs and that she was trying to sell me a black variety.
After everyone was done laughing they explained it to me, and now that I am enlightened I can say that I learned my lesson well: think twice, because maybe you asked for the wrong thing because in Italy they do not have black eggs. When next time you go on vacation somewhere nice in Italy, and you ask to have eggs for breakfast: “Dove sono i uva?” (translation: where is the grape?)