Nonna Next Door: Sandwiches

Nonna has been in good spirits as of late. There isn’t too much to complain about, other than how much I eat –  but the weather has been keeping my entire family, and Nonna in good spirits.

The usual routine of Nonna’s day  is clean, cook, and clean some more. She has however been mixing it up a little. After coming home from Sheridan a couple days ago I actually saw her venturing to the local grocery store. It’s a bit of a walk –  maybe 25 minutes, but I did see her there. With my own two eyes, I saw her at an intersection walking at her strangely brisk pace. For a little old lady she can move pretty damn quick.

I’m not sure how to describe to you how she was dressed. She was wearing dress pants and a black suit jacket. With all this nice weather she might try on some sandals –  but I guess that wasn’t in the books for her.

She wears these little jet-black laced up sneakers that look they were stolen from a dollar store. She must have bought them years ago –  and she doesn’t want to be wasteful and toss them – that just not how she rolls.

So she’s walking, her feet pitter-patting – I honk, but she just keeps on walking. She’s too concentrated at the task of picking up Metro’s latest specials to see me waving. No big deal. At this point I’m hoping she buys something so ridiculous that I can write about it later.

I turn left through the intersection and after seeing her in all her glory, it reminds me that she packed me a lunch.

Nonna can cook, and I’ve eaten some incredible sandwiches because of those worn down Italian hands. I reach into the back of my car and pull out the lunch she made me. It’s wrapped up in three different layers or Ziplock bags and Saran wrap. Don’t ask me why, this is just how she does things.

These is something about this lunch though that concerns me. Just like every morning – the routine my life faces; I hug Nonna, she shouts out, “bonna fourtuna,” and I’m on my way.

This time she handed me the bag and added, “tell ah me if you like.” She smiled, eyebrows raised and this is all starting to worry me.

I peel back the layers of plastic to find a tortilla filled with turkey bacon and prosciutto, glued together with about four different types of cheese, melted of course. I’m a little confused by what I hold in front of me. It might be appetizing, it most likely won’t. But I know what is going on here.

She has taken the remnants of the fridge and conjured up some sort of crazy wrap of meat and cheese. She didn’t want it to go to waste, so this morning she decided I was going to eat all the food that was going to go bad in the coming days.

I don’t want to eat it, in fact I’m a little offended that my Dad most likely got a normal, delicious sandwich – while I’m stuck with this rejected burrito.

But, I’m so hungry. So very, very hungry.

As you are expecting, I give in. I bite into this poor excuse for a lunch and an assortment of flavors burst into my mouth. The artificial bacon flavor, the salt, the cheese, stale, putrid, evil, filthy, unpleasant wave of meat hits me. I get the meat sweats, I have to roll down the window to cool off.

But, so hungry.

I bite into it again, devouring what is now crumbling all over my steering wheel and t-shirt.

Nonna, this is it, I’m on strike. No more hugs until I get myself a real sandwich. Step up your game Nonna, or I’ll replace the shit out of you.

By Michael Burton

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    • Amanda
    • April 4th, 2010

    LOVE the Nonna stories! :)

    • Lisa Barley
    • April 4th, 2010

    The Nonna stories are my fave. Please keep writing, your life is so much more entertaining then mine. :)

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