On the farm where we stayed in Italy, our jobs every day were determined by the man I have previously described as

the Romanian farm hand, Adrian, who speaks paragraph after paragraph of rapid Italian to whomever his helpers are for thd day, regardless of thier ability to understand. He can get really frustrated and intimidating when he thinks people are being lazy, but he also has moments of pure enthusiasm. For example, when he saw the finished wind-blocking wall of an animal shelter we’d bult out of wood pallet-plastic tarping-wood pallet sandwiches, he started skipping and singing with excitement, and then pretended to be filming a documentary of it. (…we think. again, he was speaking very fast italian/romanian as he did this.)


Sight of the day: the Romanian farm hand, drinking coffee with one hand, cigarette hanging from his mouth, the other hand holding a blow torch, using it on the goose he’d just butchered. All this while sporting impressive facial hair and wearing a bandana. After a night out that lasted until 6.30 am. He out-macho-ed Chuck Norris.

Here is this epic man’s photo:

Photo by Jess

Did I mention he regularly downs a glass of wine like a shot during his morning work break, is fairly sketchy/inappropriate when it comes to female volunteers, and lifts barrels by himself?

Photo by Jess

Or that his favorite person/thing in the world is the farm pig, named Johnny, whom he claims he has taught to speak Romanian? He calls the pig “John” sometimes, with great seriousness.

Photo by Jess

He makes various noises while he works from “ep! ep!” to a whistle to singing songs that he may or may not being making up.

Photo by Jess

This is the prototypical moment of attempting to communicate with Adriano, who speaks very Romanian, very fast, very slang-y Italian. And expects everyone else, including people who he knows only speak English, to understand his paragraphs of rapid fire Romanitalian. and in those paragraphs, he likes to include tangentially-related stories, which are really inessential to the key point. so even if you catch a few words, they might have VERY LITTLE to do with the point at hand.


And that’s the guy. Our time in Italy would have been so much less entertaining and challenging and story-worthy without him.


2 Comments on “Adriano”

  1. cyntaur23 says:

    Hoooray! This post is perfect. I’m going to be a lazy blogger and link everyone to it.

  2. […] a great writer. She’s also a photographer. So here’s her post about Adriano: It’s much better than anything I could write, and really does a great job of providing a […]

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