Welcome to the DBD, a W4C community board where you can talk about anything… like, how about that time that you had to settle for something less.
FET: Well, this just happened. My wife calls me and says she is returning with a homeless person in the car and that I'm to cook her a meal. The last thing she said was "she's Romanian and you probably shouldn't cook anything with pork". She hangs up.
"Huh?", I think. Then I put two and two together. Not pork = she has her head covered. She's not Muslim. She's Romani.
Great. I start cooking a big old omelet. She is invited in and the "dikhlo" headscarf confirms she is Romani. My wife says oh, we need to help her. We need to get her social services. The woman is illiterate, so my wife is trying to communicate via yes/no questions on Google Translate with the sound on. My wife has met Romani before, so I am surprised she doesn't recognize her attire.
My wife is chattering on and after a while, I interrupt. I point to the lady and ask her point blank: "Romani?"
My wife pauses. I look at her. She looks at me. I say "if she needs to go to the bathroom she goes to the powder room and you don't take your eyes off her because she's..."
"I GOT it", she acknowledges.
My wife and I have dealt with Romani in the Balkans and Italy many, many times - all were negative experiences. At best, it was begging. At worst, it was attempted scams or attempted pickpocketing. It gets to the point where if one saw Romani approaching, you crossed the road and if they crossed with you, you got into an aggressive position.
The lady is now declining all forms of social services. Doesn't want to be driven anywhere.
"What do I do?", my wife asks.
"Feed her and send her on her way"
"Do you want money?", my wife types.
My wife smiles, but her eyes don't. "Eh. I'll still give her, like, 10 bucks, but dammit, why does this always happen to me."
I say "because you have a good heart"
"I can't believe that I might have almost fell for a scam this morning, but it is what it is".
SHE BLINDED ME WITH...
The time you settled for less
OUR CRUMBLING DEMOCRACY
ELSEWHERE IN COLLEGE