Going on Dates {Tuesdays with Tina, part 17}

This entry is part 17 of 22 in the series Tuesdays With Tina

We continue with the interview of both my mom and dad to get each of their perspectives on how they met. If you are new to this series, you can go back and catch up.

Tuesdays with Tina

Me: Tell me some of the dates you went on. What were some things that you would do? Because you didn’t talk very much since you didn’t understand each other.

Hugh: In the summertime we went to the beach and I asked her, “You want a hot dog?” And she didn’t know what a hot dog was and all I could do was translate ‘hot‘ and ‘dog‘ which was “cane caldo.”

Tina: Cane caldo!! That’s disgusting! It was at the American Beach which was near Lago Patria. 

Me: Oh, the sandy beach?

Tina: Yes, right. The sand beach.

Hugh: All the Americans lived out there then.

Tina: Sometimes we would go to the movie theater. Always the American one. I would buy a container of popcorn and I would eat. I didn’t understand anything. We’d buy Coca Cola. We would go to friends’ houses. There was Jim…what was his name? Jim… He was very much into his looks. He dressed so well. He probably only had two pairs of shoes but they were nice.

Hugh: He was paying $80-$90 for his shoes then and I was paying $2-$3! Go figure! This kid was younger than me. He only did 4 years in the military and then he got out. He went to Atlanta and got into computers. We went with him one time to the restaurant that turns round and round in Atlanta.

Tina: Oh yes, we went there. That was with him?

Hugh: Yes, with him and his wife.

Tina: I remember going but I didn’t remember with whom. I do remember going to this restaurant and I took the elevator. Back then I could still ride in an elevator.

Hugh: It was the kind of restaurant that you sit outside and it spins slowly around. We went up there and had supper. And then we never saw him again!

Tina: You used to live with him at Via Tasso.

Hugh: When I moved in with him there were 5 of us living in this house. It’s a villa. You can see all the bay.

Tina: It’s a beautiful antique house with a beautiful view.

Hugh: Five of us were paying 70,000 lire a month for it.

Me: Each?

Hugh: No, no. The five of us together were paying that. We payed about 15,000 lire per person.

Tina: Back then, that was a lot of money…

Hugh: One guy got out of the navy and he left. Then another guy…It came down to just Kelly and me…That was his name!

Tina: Yes, that’s right! Jim Kelly!

Hugh: It came down to just him and me. We split 35,000 each. When he left, I said I couldn’t afford 70 so I moved into a house…

Tina:…into an apartment on the last floor at the Vomero near Piazza Medaglia d’Oro, remember? You lived with a lady? She treated you like a son…

Hugh: It was a couple. I rented a bedroom.

Me: I didn’t know that! So you didn’t live in the barracks?

Hugh: Oh no! They kicked you out of the barracks. When you were second class, you had to move out. And they gave you a living allowance, which was okay. I always had money left over from the living allowance.

Tina: Because he sold a few things on the black market…cigarettes…

Hugh: I think I was paying 10,000 or 12,000 lire a month. But I didn’t eat there. It was just a place to sleep.

Tina: Just think, when we got married and went to go live at Poggioreale. We lived on the first floor and Gianni and Anna [mom’s brother and his wife] lived on the fourth floor…

Hugh:…but it was in front of us… There was a little courtyard that divided the two buildings. They would sit out there and yap yap between each other and then everywhere Tina’d go Anna went.

Tina: Gianni would go to work, Anna didn’t have children so she hung out with me.

Me: Gianni would go to work at the dental laboratory…?

Tina: It was a different one than the one you knew but yes. He married Anna in ’66. So we lived in the same place. I remember that we used to pay 50,000 lire a month. That was a lot of money for us and it was too much money for the building but it was very close to the base, Capodichino.

Hugh: It was only five minutes to work. Tina would take me to work and keep the car. She thought she was a big shot then.

Me: Because she had a car?

Hugh: Because she had a car to herself!

Tina: And it was a Volvo! It was a big car for Naples! Papa’ had a 600 [Fiat], Gianni had a 500 [Fiat] so the Volvo was an “American” car.

Hugh: But it was really Swedish!

Tina: But you didn’t see those kind of cars around and it had an American license plate. When we would go to my mother’s house at Vico Canale, I was able to park it so close to the building! I was a good driver! Right, Ugo?

Hugh: Hmmm…

Tina: I would cross the city to go to Agnano (where the commissary was located) to go shopping…


Here’s a link to a Fiat 600

Here’s a link to a Fiat 500

Series Navigation<< Meeting dad continued {Tuesdays with Tina, part 16}Going to the Chapel…{Tuesdays with Tina, part 18} >>

About Sheila @ Making the Most of Every Day

I'm a wife, mom, and a homeschool teacher. I'm always behind on housework and paper pile sorting. I'm fond of this crazy life but not of melted cheese. I want to follow hard after God, making each day really count. I like to run, read, cook (and eat!). Thanks for joining along on my journey!