Monday, May 28, 2012

#13 - Life is full of surprises

I headed off to the cafe to start my day (today was Briana-meets-the-Pope-for-lunch-at-the-Vatican day). Our favorite cafe didn't even have one cornetto cioccolato, so Jenny and I went to "il cafffe con tre effe" (a little further down the street) to get a cappuccino and a croissant. We picked out our croissants and headed over to the bar to order our cappuccinos.

Pastry lady
We stood among a crowd of about 10 others, waiting to get their morning espresso or cafe latte. As the crowd surrounded us, Jenny's cappuccino was delivered to her in a plastic to-go cup from a man behind the counter. We like to put sugar in our cappuccino, so she removed the lid and put two packets of sugar in the cup.

I ordered my cappuccino while Jenny replaced the lid to hers. I said "cappuccino" and just as the gentleman turned away, a warm and now-sugary splash of a freshly brewed caffeinated beverage collided with my face. Half of Jenny's cappuccino had managed to make its way onto my face, into my hair, onto my scarf and my left jacket sleeve, while the other half splashed onto the floor and counter in the cafe. Needless to say, we were all surprised, especially the baristas, who looked as if it had never happened before.

Jenny had pressed too hard on the lid, causing a cappuccino explosion. After the shock died down, we laughed it off (and so did the baristas) and she was given another cappuccino. Jenny went to the cashier to pay for hers and wait for me. I received my cappuccino and poured in my three packets of sugar (because I can have three packets of sugar if I want).

I simultaneously grabbed my pastry bag and replaced my cappuccino lid, without realizing how hard I must have been pushing on the top of my to-go cup. Before I knew it, my cappuccino was all over the counter and the floor of the cafe within two minutes of Jenny's initial explosion, but this time, the employees didn't think it was as comical. I felt terrible, but couldn't help but laugh at the coincidence and the utter embarrassment. I couldn't believe it and I honestly didn't know what to do.

There were people all around me and there was cappuccino on the floor. I grabbed the tiny napkins and tried to mop up some of the mess, but gave up when people started giving me mean glares. I took my new cappuccino (layered with two cups for reinforcement) as the barrista pointed at it and told me in Italian "don't push on the top" and "don't take off the lid." I know he was thinking, "Americans..." So, sorry guys, I didn't make a good impression today. I paid for my drink and pastries and left.

We met up with the rest of our group in front of our apartment. I waited until I got on the tram to put sugar into my drink, and I drank it as soon as I did so I didn't have to worry about any more cappuccino surprises.

Spotted sleeve
With my first 20 minutes out the door consisting of two exploding cappuccinos and almost missing the tram, I wasn't sure how the rest of the day would go. After a long day at the Vatican, I decided to relax in my apartment. I took a long nap, got dinner from a small restaurant a couple blocks away, and watched a movie in bed, safe from exploding drinks and from walking street vendors asking me to purchase an umbrella every ten seconds.




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