Che Ti Dice La Patria? (Men without women)

A meal in Spezia

There was no doorway leading from the room except into the kitchen. A curtain hung over it. The girl who had taken our order came in from the kitchen with spaghetti. She put it on the table and brought a bottle of red wine and sat down at the table.

“Well”, I said to Guy, “you wanted to eat some place simple.”

“This isn’t simple, this is complicated.”

“What do you say?” , asked the girl. “Are you Germans?”

“South Germans,” I said. “The South Germans are a gentle, lovable people”.

“Don’t understand,” she said.

“What’s the mechanics of this place?” Guy asked. “Do I have to let her put her arm around my neck?”

“Certainly,” I said. “Mussolini has abolished the brothels. This is a restaurant.”

Ernest Hemingway, Arrow Books 2004 (First Published 1928)



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