Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Not about cheese

I wore flip flops today for the first time this year, just thought that was noteworthy. It's been deliciously springy lately, probably because spring is on its way. Yesterday we put our clocks ahead an hour for daylight savings—like little lemmings—and it was about as exciting as daylight savings could be expected to be (we could just stop, you know). Everyone was walking around like they were suffering from mini jet-lag. Wake time, nap time, bedtime—all thrown off.

Before dinner some of the children (I'm not naming any names) were absolutely bouncing off the walls with anticipation (Uncle Jacob's family was coming for dinner!!) so I decided to take the kids on a pre-dinner walk, which they all enjoyed.

While we were out walking, we stopped to play in some green space and when it was time to go (ie. when I got a text from Andrew saying that Jacob and Shayla had arrived early so that Carter could play with his cousins) I said, quoting a well-known cartoon figure, "Come on, vamonos! Everybody let's go!"

And Miriam said, "Mom, what does asiago mean?"

Okay, random child.

"It's cheese..." I began to explain.

She looked at me with a very confused look.

"Yup. It's an Italian cheese," I continued, stuffing her brain with information, hoping to erase that look on her face. "So...I'm going to venture that it's named after a city or region in Italy.* A lot of cheese is named after places—you'd be surprised how much Italian food is named after places. Romano, Parmigiano..."

"It's...cheese...?" she repeated, perplexed, blinking.


"Then why do you always say it?"

"I don't always say asiago," I denied. "I hardly ever say asiago."

What a weird thing to go around saying, Asigao.... And then it dawned on me.

"Could you possibly mean andiamo?" I asked.

"That's it!" she said.

"Okay, well, andiamo means...let's Italian."

"Then what does vamonos mean?"

"Vamonos means...let's go...but in Spanish."

"Okay, cool," she said. "Vamonos, ala tool, si?"

"Yes, but...ala tool is Arabic, not Spanish..."


"Yes. Ala tool is Arabic for straight ahead. Yalla, ala tool."

They're also familiar with Russian (poshli, etc) and French (allons-y).

Communication is never difficult at our house, not when my children know with certainty that I am definitely not talking about cheese.

* It is.

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