“Um, no. Non sono tedesca. Americana.”
“Ah, Americana. Bionda.”
Almost every day, someone comments on my hair. It feels very odd to have strangers come up to and just declare, “bionda!” Or, “blonde!” Without fail, they always inquire into my heritage.
Like the man in the elevator at school yesterday. Elevators in the US are large, impersonal spaces. There is a unwritten rule that you enter, find a spot, and face forward to watch the floors go by and avoid making eye contact with any of your elevator companions.
Elevators in Italy seem to be approximately 1/10 the size of American elevators. What I believed to be a two-person elevator, carried 8 of us. As you can imagine, 8 people in a two person space makes for some close encounters.
The question came from 3 inches to my right. “Tedesca?” “German?”
“No, I’m not German. American.”
“Ah, American. Blonde.”
Obvious Americans, please exit the elevator on the floor 7- Language Center.