Tuesdays are market days here in Aviano. When I lived in Kalamaja in Tallinn, the marketplace was just across the street from my home. Behind the tram stop, where all the squeaky wormlike machines paused and picked you up or dropped you off, lied the maze of Baltic Station Marketplace or “Balta turg” as the locals called it. Every once in a while, when I got myself out of the bed before noon on a day off, I’d go and get myself a bag of potatoes, a bundle of spinach and a good fatty piece of smoked salmon. A big part of the thrill was to go through the second-hand clothes boxes and racks in the hopes to find something old and nifty! And to get to practice some Russian and mingle with the cheerful salesmen.
Now, strolling the streets more than 2000 km away, in Italy, some things have changed and some have stayed the same. Firstly, I still love going to the marketplace but instead of Russian I get to practice Italian and instead of -20 C we only had one degree of frosty temperatures this morning. The sunshine does not seem to care that it’s January, shining every so bright and warm. But the faces at the market are as cheerful and the baskets and boxes of second-hand goods are at least as thrilling to dig into!
Last Tuesday I got my hands on this vintage Italian army coat made in the Cangioli woollen mill. There were still paper tags sewn on the lining, indicating the gorgeous olive-hued coat with golden buttons had not even been worn. I was a bit worried at first that the size is way too big (although I do love mens’ clothes and oversized styles), especially the shoulders since the woolen fabric on this one is very firm and heavy, making all the folds and cuts stand out prominently. But after rolling up the sleeves (which seems to be something I tend to do with all of my coats and blazers), leaving the buttons undone and adding a big warm scarf and a beige turtle-neck sweater to the ensemble, it all seemed to work together as a team quite well. Plus, after the first 15 minutes outside, I was indeed very glad my bottom (and the 30 weeks baby bump!) was being kept warm since the -1 C felt freezing! (Sorry, estonians! I know you’re laughing at this right now!)
So going back to the market today, the salesman was already smiling from far when he saw me approach the second-hand “treasure boxes”. And instead of him complimenting me on my coat, I should have complimented him on his kindness for selling this beauty to me for 2€! But, you see, I do need to go to the market more, just to practice my Italian more, to be able to compliment all the Italians for their cheerful nature and wide, warm smiles. Even on a chilly January morning, the lips of the ladies have been painted ruby-red, exclaiming greetings and salutations to the left and to the right, the sun is glistening back from their vintage Gucci sunnies and the coats, the grass and shiny leaves on trees are so pretty and olive green!