Ciao a tutti!
My dissertation defense has been schedule for November 17, so I am busy preparing for it and getting myself in order. I apologize for the lack of posts.
I wanted to revisit this post on la mappina:
Several years ago when I was in Palermo, I stayed at a small apartment. In the kitchen, was a chalkboard that had a greeting inscribed on it by the landlord. Two of my friends came over for dinner, and while we were cooking, one of my friends asked me for “la mappina.”
I knew the word for map was “mappa” and didn’t see any “little maps” in the kitchen. “La mappina, la mappina!” she kept saying, pointing. The only thing I saw was the dish towel that I had dropped on the floor moments ago. “Lo strofinaccio vuoi dire?” “
“Sì, sì, la mappina!”
“Why are you calling it a mappina?!" I said to aloud in English.
She asked our other friend, also from Palermo. “What do you call it?”
I can’t remember now, but he used a completely different word I didn’t know, and I started laughing. Three people, all speaking Italian, all with three different words to mean the same thing and none of us knew what the other wanted.
The moral of the story is you can learn a lot about a language by doing the ordinary things you do everyday. Also, while Italian is the language of Italy, there is a lot of beautiful variation to the language as move from north to south!
Probably the third word was "canovaccio," which is commonly used in Central Italy.