Thursday, September 4, 2008

Mrs. Deepa-squalley

Bill and I had another mini-date tonight. This is getting fun and seems so indulgent. We dined at Mimi's, made a quick stop at the mall, and finished by returning something to Old Navy.

On the drive home, a large semi turned ahead of us, the word "PASQUALE " enscribed down its side. I laughed, remembering a neighbor of ours years ago in Detroit, Michigan: Mrs. DiPasquale. She was a tiny Italian woman: she spoke only Italian and turned out fabulous Italian food. She usually wore her hair in a tight bun, but occasionally I'd spot Mrs. D. out in the yard, her hair cascading down her back. Exotic! We had just moved in from Memphis, Tennessee, and my mother found Mrs. DiPasquale to be a wonderful curiosity, the likes of which she'd never met in the deep South.

Thanks to my mother's outgoing personality and Mrs. D's generosity, we were soon treated to delicious breads and savory pastas. I've no idea how mom reciprocated. Fried chicken? Cornbread? Somehow she managed to communicate with Mrs. D. and they enjoyed a unique friendship: southern housewife and elderly Italian mama.

As an 8-year-old, I just couldn't figure out how to spell her name. In my mind, it was something like Mrs. "Deepa-squalley." What a long, funny name for a little woman who didn't speak our language. But one with an open and giving heart.

Thank you, Mrs. Deepa-sqalley, for showing me that differences can be the spice of life.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Pasquale's is a great local, reasonably-priced Italian restaurant in Old Town Westerville--been there for over 25 years! Might be another good night out for you and the hubby.

And I knew a girl by the last name of DiPasquale in Dublin!