Since y’all are very loyal readers, I’m sure you guys have read my post on sales in Rome, and know that I love to waste my money on shoes. Which is exactly what I did today.
Today’s shopping trip included a stop at ALDO‘s, a shoe store on Via del Corso.
I tried on a pair of low boots, or booties, took about 20 minutes to decide between the 38 or the 39, (I chose the 39), and then got in line. The salesman was nice enough to bring the box of shoes to the register for me, so when I got to the front of the line, I simply told the guy, ‘I have the boots over there.’ I said it in Italian, and for boots, I used the word ‘stivali,’ which translates directly into ‘boots.’
Upon hearing my Americanized Italian, (and probably noticing I was speaking English to my friend), the cash register guy replied in English, saying, “Those are not ‘stivali,’ they are ‘tronchetti.'”
Now, I am not one to argue, (OK, I am one to argue), but I just had to investigate this difference further. I wouldn’t go out of my way to say I bought ‘booties’ instead of ‘boots’ in English, but I suppose in Italian, I should. Tronchetto (in plural, tronchetti) means a log, stemming from the Italian word, tronco, meaning cut off, truncated, or incomplete. This leads to reason that tronchetti are incomplete stivali.
I guess the ALDO employee got me: calling low boots, or booties tronchetti, makes way more sense. Lesson learned…bitterly.