Museum Musings: It’s August, Dinah…

Last Wednesday I ate lunch with my friend Dinah who works in the publications department at the Museum.

We always eat outside in the garden, this time we sat in my favorite spot under the trees.

my favorite spot under the trees

Half way through lunch a man sat down next to us and made a call on his cell phone.

“That man’s talking in Italian,” Dinah whispered to me.

“So….,” I didn’t even bother to look up.

“I mean he’s talking on his cell phone in Italian,”

“Yeah and so what? It’s August.”

“What’s August got to do with him being Italian?” she looked at me as if I were completely wacko. Perhaps all these years of standing at my cash register has made me crazy.

“The Europeans take their summer vacations in August,” I said.

She looked unimpressed. “I thought we’re having our lunch in Los Angeles.”

“Hah hah I forgot, I thought I was still in Spain!” I said, but when she didn’t laugh, I told her, “I’m sure a large percentage of the visitors walking around the garden today are tourists from Europe.  I’ve heard people speaking Italian every day this month. And French, German, Dutch and Spanish, Portuguese and Hebrew too…  and of course Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Danish, Swedish, Finnish…in fact I think everyone I served this morning spoke a foreign language.”

I think that impressed her.

the garden

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About dearrosie

We think we need so much, when all we really need is time to breathe. Come walk with me, put one foot in front of the other, and get to know yourself. Please click the link to my blog - below - and leave me a comment. I love visitors.
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40 Responses to Museum Musings: It’s August, Dinah…

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Rosie, Yesterday I called you too late, and you had already gone home. Thank you for your phone message. You are so dear…I hope you got home and were able to rest. I enjoy so much getting your postings…I do not read them right away, but I save them for a nice quiet day, when I can really enjoy your words and your pictures. I AM SO PROUD OF YOU for having walked el camino a Santiago de Compostela, and I am so proud of you for having a blog where you can have a voice that reflects your heart!

    See you tomorrow. Love, Laura

  2. haha…you’re right. It is August because it sounds like August.

  3. Working in the publications dept of a museum is one of my dream jobs – your friend is a lucky lady! Beautiful shots (and one yummy looking salad!)

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi Anne,
      I think my friend knows what a lovely job she has, but “as her head in buried in the books” she doesn’t get to see the tourists that often.

      I’m so grateful I have easy access to that beautiful garden. Because I have so many food allergies I bring my own lunch every day.
      You’re invited to come eat lunch in the garden with me any day…

  4. sybil says:

    I’m still trying to figure out why she was surprised to hear Italian being spoken in Los Angeles ….

    • dearrosie says:

      Although we in the Museum Store know that in August many Europeans – especially French and Italian will be at our cash registers – Dinah works in one of the offices and doesn’t see the tourists unless she walks over to the Museum or eats lunch in the cafeteria or garden, and though visitors from all over the world visit Los Angeles they don’t hang out where we live and shop (it would be unusual to hear someone chatting in Italian on a cell phone in her supermarket), and she’d had a busy day at her desk so when the man spoke in Italian she pinched herself thinking she’d maybe landed in Italy… 🙂

  5. theonlycin says:

    Your lunch looks perfectly suited to the lovely garden. Are there no Italians in LA, I know there are lots and lots in NYC?

    • dearrosie says:

      Howzit Cin,
      I eat lunches like that every day. I’m sure there must be many Italians in L.A. but they’d be second and third generation Italians who don’t speak Italian on their cell phones.

  6. Arindam says:

    Can you tell me, what’s the procedure to get a job in your museum! 🙂 I am just loving it, Rosie Auntie. By the way have you heard someone speaking Hindi also? And not to forget your favorite spot under the tree is beautiful.

    • dearrosie says:

      How do you get a job in our museum? I think you have to know how to work a cash register, have experience working in a bookstore, be good with people, be able to stand all day… .

      Of course I see Indians walking through the Museum every day – I always notice their beautiful saris and Salwar Kameez’s – but they don’t all come in August like the Europeans, and they are usually able to speak English so I don’t know whether they speak Hindi.

  7. munchow says:

    I understand that spot under the tree is your favourite place. Looks fantastic. And then I am a little amazed that someone is reacting to a foreign language being spoken on a cell phone. That’s the modern interconnectivity (if they don’t already knew that)! Certainly being a foreigner in this country, I am one of those who would surprise your friend with a language you didn’t even mention. Anyway what a gorgeous garden you have at the museum.

    • dearrosie says:

      Hello Otto,
      I look forward to eating lunch with you under those trees one day. I know you’ll be coming to L.A one of these days… 🙂

      I don’t think she was reacting to the foreign language on the cell phone. I think she’d had a busy morning at her desk and didn’t expect to hear Italian spoken in the garden at work – almost as if she’d woken from a nap and found herself in Italy.

      The most common language in the Museum other than English and Spanish, is French. Over the years a few French staff members and many French tourists have asked me why there are so many French people walking around the Museum especially in July and August, and I do not know!

      There were many languages I didn’t mention. Today I served a Greek couple, a Turkish student, a group of girls from Brazil, a woman from Denmark, several men from Saudi Arabia, two women from India, many Chinese women as well as several people from Paris, a man from Barcelona, another one from Rome, a couple from Milan…

  8. I’m sure you do indeed hear many languages. The museum attracts visitors from all over the world, and it should! It’s amazing. The garden is one of my favorite spots and I haven’t visited for a while…I need to do that before long! I’ll be in touch when I do! 🙂 Debra

  9. shoreacres says:

    Is that a current photo of the garden? With wisteria hanging? My goodness! Our wisteria is often gone by April. It is a lovely place – perfect for a relaxing lunch.

    The Italians are spread out across much of coastal America. Remember my post about the big tree that was moved? That was planted by Italian immigrants. And one of the important railways in Texas was called the ‘Macaroni Line” because it was built by Italian immigrants. There was a group of Italian families that controlled much of the gambling and illegal liquor business in Galveston during prohibition. Some consider it an irony that a son of one of those families went “straight” and became head of the Beach Patrol. (Whether he still is, I’m not sure.)

    While many of your visitors no doubt are tourists, I’d bet a good number of them are tourists with family or friends here. In either case, your tale’s a wonderful reminder of the diversity you get to enjoy there at the museum.

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi Linda,
      You’re very observant. The photo of the wisteria is from earlier this spring, I didn’t have a chance to share it before. It’s beautiful isn’t it?

      I didn’t realize there were so many Italian immigrants in Texas, or that the railway line was called the “Macaroni Line”. I’ll never forget your post about the man who paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to save that huge old tree by having it moved onto his land, or the story of his Italian ancestors and how they came to America. How is the tree?

      You know I’ve never asked the tourists whether they are visiting family in California. Perhaps that’s why so many French families come to the Museum.

  10. How often does someone make a ‘Someone’s in the kitchen with Dinah’ joke’?

  11. bronxboy55 says:

    Rosie, have you managed to learn a few phrases from any of those languages? I bet that would impress your visitors.

    But why was Dinah so surprised to hear a man speaking Italian?

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi Charles,
      I do speak a few phrases of several languages and the visitors are always delighted to hear their language.

      When you walk around the Hollywood Walk of Fame or along Venice Beach or Snata Monica Pier you expect everyone to speak a different language, but I’m sure she wasn’t expecting to hear Italian spoken at work.
      No doubt you’d also be surprised if you sat down for lunch in a garden near your home and heard someone talking in Italian.

  12. Val says:

    I’m afraid I’d have been so put out that someone sat down at ‘my’ table and started using a cell phone that I’d not have noticed they were speaking Italian! 😉 But how curious to be surprised that someone’s speaking Italian – or any other language, really. Maybe her head just scrambled at that moment. It was probably the cell phone ‘waves’! 😉

    What’s the pink stuff in the bowl? Is it something with beetroot?

    Thanks for the link, by the way. Appreciate it! 🙂

    I’d better stop now, too many smilies in this comment.

    • dearrosie says:

      Hello Val,
      Thanks for all the smiles 🙂

      If you think about it this way: you’re at work where you speak, read and write in English all day, and when you take your lunch break you can easily forget that you work at a Museum, and that August is the month when Europeans go on their vacations so there are often more tourists than locals walking in our galleries

      Yes the pink stuff is beetroot. Known as beet in this country.

  13. A beautiful garden to share delicious food with family and friends. Reminds me of great times with family back home. Thanks for sharing! Have a great weekend.

  14. souldipper says:

    Yum, your salad look delish. I just got home from volunteering at the Theater and I’m starving. The dozen fresh cherries and delicious banana didn’t fill the empties. Spare me from going to that cupboard for more chocolate covered ginger! I will NOT do it. Sprouts! I’ll munch on sprouts. I even like them better than something sweet!

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi Amy,
      The salad was delish. It’s more or less what I bring to work every day – fresh fruit and veggies (steamed or raw) from the farmer’s market with a bit of rice or pasta.
      If you didn’t live so far away I’d be more than happy to give you a plate of dinner and spare you going to the cupboard for the chocolate covered ginger. But now that you’ve mentioned it, I think I’ll also go to that cupboard for the Chocolate covered ginger….I love them … especially the kind Trader Joes sell….

  15. Kathy says:

    How nice to be able to sit outside for a wonderful picnic lunch. Also interesting about the different perspective of workers in the museum. You know all about the many Europeans visiting…your friend probably knows other things. How fun that you can share different aspects with one another!

    • dearrosie says:

      Thank you for understanding the situation Kathy. I see the visitors every day so I know that August means many European tourists, while my friend is sitting at her desk working to deadlines that don’t include visitors to the Museum.

      I eat my lunch outside in the garden every day. Today I went to the back of an office building far away from manicured lawns and flower beds and hoped the deer would come by. We’ve seen them a few times early in the morning the past week. This morning a large buck was standing in the road.

  16. Dinah says:

    Everything you do impresses me, Rosanne!
    Love, Dinah
    xxxooo

    • dearrosie says:

      Thank you dear Dinah. 🙂
      Ever since the Good Greatsby left the comment about “someone’s in the kitchen with Dinah” I can’t get rid of that earworm…Next time we have lunch we’ll have to sing it.

  17. sonali says:

    You have a beautiful place outside the museum. Nice sit out for a lunch, accompanied by a friend, Awesome! Its great that you admire the differences that the visitors bring along – differences in culture, language, appearance and everything. Keep going! 🙂

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi Sonali,
      I’m very fortunate to be able to disappear in the garden at lunch time. It’s so calming to sit under those trees and listen to the wind blowing …

      I enjoy that every visitor to the museum brings something unique of their culture or language with them.

  18. Eating under a tree with a good friends sounds like a fun and relaxing time. The nice thing about being in places like L.A and other main U.S, cities is that you get to meet people of different culltures. There is always something new and fascinating to learn. Have a great week.

    • dearrosie says:

      Hi IT,
      Are you able to eat your lunch outside under a tree when you’re at work? It’s so relaxing you can pretend you’re on vacation.

      It’s true that when one meets people from different cultures one can learn so much from them. I’m fortunate that the museum is in such a large city.

      I hope you’re feeling better.

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