Testaccio, ten minutes walking distance from our new home, is considered the neighbourhood of the ‘true’ Romans. And the Testaccio market is unanomously considered one of the best (if not the best) markets in Rome.
‘Se nun je dai la robba bona a queli der Testaccio, queli te pijano e te menano!’ an old Roman once told me. Which, in Roman slang, means ‘if you don’t give good products to those living in Testaccio, they take you and they beat you!’
The first time Mathilde went to the market, she called me all excited: “Matt, I have been to Testaccio market. Oh my god, it’s gorgeous! I even felt I wanted to cook!”. And while I was pretending to be as excited as Mathilde on the phone, inside I was thinking: ‘poor Mathilde, I am sure those merchants ripped her off’, and the only thing I could say was “be careful to the pickpockets”.
This morning we went to the market together, and I stood open-mouthed observing Mathilde agilely moving between stalls with all the merchants warmly greeting her: ‘buongiorno signorina, bentornata!’, ‘buongiorno mademoiselle, piacere rivederla!’, ‘bonjour-bonjour’...