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Friday, August 17, 2007
I Still Feel Bad
Last night we stopped for pizza on our way home. Ordered it and decide to eat it there, at one of the tables placed on the sidewalk. When we were about to start, a woman came and sat at the table near ours. She was old, poorly dressed and looked a bit sad to me. But she was not asking for anything...

I had no idea what to do. Offer my help? Back off? My friend Cristina did have an experience with a beggar throwing money back at her in a moment of anger at life...What was my big problem? I'll tell you!

If someone looks at me when I am eating and really craves for (or I think he/she really craves for) what I am eating, I can no longer eat. Yes folks. Where does this come from? Legacy of the Communists actually. See, when I was about 4 or 5, good food was scarce. And one afternoon, when my dad was taking me home from kindergarten, he noticed they had brought salami at the some shop near our house. There was a huge queue. And he left me there, waiting for him to get his salami card from home. Well, yes, there were cards for everything: meat, bread, oil, milk. You could not buy anything without one and you certainly couldn't buy more than allowed on the card.

I spend about 20 minutes queuing, with this huge fear that the salami will be over before my dad came back or that I will get in from of the saleswoman before he returned and I will be thrown out from the queue. He got there in time, and as I had been standing there for so long, my dad asked the saleswoman to cut a slice for me, and I took a bite instantly.

As I was small and the salami sold there had a pretty large diameter, I got to bite once more before exiting the shop. And my dad said: "Alina, please put the slice in the bag. Some other children, whose parents didn't get to buy them salami, might see you. And they'll cry when they get home." I obeyed instantly, remembering my fresh fear they will run out of salami.

That is why if someone looks in a certain way to what I am eating, although everything is now available for purchase, I can no longer it. Not everyone can afford everything I can, and I am pretty obsessed by this.

What did I do with the lady? I only ate half the pizza and left the other half on the table. It was her choice to take it or not. No offense, nothing imposed. I still wish I could have done more...And I still cannot understand how some can still praise the Communist period!

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posted by Alina @ 5:32 PM  
3 Comments:
  • At 8/18/2007 11:56 AM, Blogger SaRaH said…

    Well Kay this certainly speaks of what kind of a person you are.. I am glad that you still remember those times and feel for the people who are needy today.. I think what you did was right as you could have hurt her feeling but somehow you gave her the dignity of choice. Good call hope you feel better now.. Cheers

     
  • At 8/19/2007 8:33 AM, Anonymous Sim said…

    I remember those times and I have the same feeling when someone looks at me that way while I am eating. This is why I hate to eat in the McDonalds from Gara de Nord. When someone comes and asks for food you give it to him or whatever, but when they just stare at your food while you can see on their face that they are starving you don't know what to do. I don't know why I would have done, maybe the same, leave something for her and if she was really hungry she would have eaten it after you left.

    This made me remember Gara de Nord where you can find maybe the biggest collection of starving people. This is so sad...

     
  • At 8/24/2007 6:05 PM, Blogger Di said…

    I do remember those times. I wish I it was a bad dream; sadly, it's not...

     
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Name: Alina
Home: Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania
About Me: "This is my church. This is where I heal my hurts". It's also where I feel free and my preferred means of expression.
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