A year ago, when me and my boyfriend had been living together for only three months, we received the news:
– His family would come to visit us in London for three weeks –
Uhhh scary! It was finally time to….
Meet the Fockers!
The Fockers as the parents of the boyfriend. The in-laws. Not as a crazy hippie couple. And by the way, they were nothing at all like Barbra Streisand and Dustin Hoffman’s characters in the movie. Phew.
Vincenzo kept on insisting that three weeks were too long and that the flights should be changed, so they finally changed the dates, and they would stay for ten days.
Now, my boyfriend’s family is very special. He is the oldest son from a beautiful couple from Pomigliano D’Arco nearby Naples. After him, four more sisters were born: Maria who is a bit younger than me and speaks Spanish (Hooray!). Then there’s Sara, who is in the middle of her teenage years, and somehow she’s handling it very well (Not at all like me. I was a complete mess as a teenager. The dark past). And then Claudia and Vivi, who are the youngest sisters and are twins, but not identical. Remember science class in school? Well, they’re not monozygotic, but very similar…
I knew Maria before from Facebook, but only the parents, and the other three sisters were going to come to visit. That got me seriously nervous, because when my boyfriend told me that he had to work and I would have to pick up his family from the train station, if Maria wasn’t coming, I would have no translator. Screwed!
So The day arrived and I went to pick them up at the train station. My Italian in that moment was reduced to Grazie, Ciao and Piacere so I used those words all the time. And nothing else. I couldn’t understand a single word they said, they couldn’t understand me either, so they just followed me.
When we were sorting out their travel cards, we realised that the two youngest sisters needed to take a picture for their cards. We then found a photo booth, and don’t know how I managed to explain myself, but I convinced them of getting the picture of just one of them twice. I mean, they looked alike! we would cheat on the tube operators, but they would save time and money. It was a great idea! Great idea? my in-laws would think that I was a trouble maker that loved avoiding rules and breaking the law. All after a minute of meeting each other… Simply great.
On their stay we managed to do a lot of sightseeing. In the night, my boyfriend’s mother or Madame T as I call her, cooked for us traditional Italian dinners while the father, Monsieur M tried to teach me Pomiglianese and Napolitano.
Their visit ended up being fun but short. From that time I fell in love with the in-laws and the girls, and learned a big lesson: Rule No.1 What NOT to do with your Italian in-laws