Life is Like a Bowl of Pasta

Nov 16, 2014

“Have you ever eaten Italian pasta?”

This was the question put to me by my soon-to-be mother-in-law the first time I went home for family dinner. As if navigating the dynamics of a large Italian dinner wasn’t enough, I was suddenly being put on the spot about my culinary knowledge in a country where food is everything.

tomato spaghetti

Being young, and let’s admit it, a little naïve, I quickly launched into defence mode and started sprouting my pasta-eating knowledge.

Yes. I’m new to Italy, but my parents are Italian so… Yes. I know that’s not the same things as ‘being Italian’. However, it does mean that I’ve eaten… You can imagine how the rest of the conversation went – yes, that well.

It wasn’t until years later that I found myself imitating my mother-in-law when I caught myself asking my son if he had ever eaten real pasta.


“How’s it different to normal pasta?” was his speedy reply.

“It’s not the pasta itself,” I began. “It’s the fact that its so easy to cook, you always make too much. Which provides the perfect excuse to invite a friend, or three, over to enjoy it with you. Then one thing leads to another, lunch becomes dinner, and before you know it you’ve created a bowl of new memories instead of pasta.”

“Sounds great, mom,” he said. “Now pass me the parmesan.”

I might have to get him to cook with me a little more often if this ‘life is like a bowl of pasta’ idea is going to sink in.


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