The Most Beautiful Woman In Town

My grandmother was born in Biano, Italy and when she was 16 my grandfather came into the town and she was the most beautiful woman in the town. And he met her, he fell in love with her, and he came to the United States.

Two of her older brothers were already in New York and they called for her to come and stay with them, and that’s when she met up with my grandfather again and got married. She got married at 17, had four daughters and ended up working in a sweatshop in Manhattan making dresses. 

She taught all of her daughters how to sew and only learned English as she went around the city. At home they would speak Italian and my mother would answer her in English to try and help her understand more of of the English language. 

She was a very kind person and she used to talk about how she would spend hours and hours on the sewing machine making beautiful lace dresses for Saks 5th Avenue. She taught all of her daughters how to sew and as I was growing up my mother would make dresses for us. And it was a skill that I probably should have learned, I wish I did learn it. But it was definitely a trait that helped her survive living in New York.

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The Samatella Story

Long time ago there was this lady and they call Samatella. Samatella she was crochet and she lost the crochet and she look look look for find the crochet and she find pennies. So, she said, “What I gonna buy with pennies? I gonna buy…” you know-, “plum. There is the pit and they choke me. I could buy nothing with no inside pit. So I decide to buy lipstick. I went to the store and I buy lipstick and I get inside the house and then I got the little chair and I sat down outside.” 

So- and then after a little while then, you know, the rooster pass and he said, “Oh Samatella you look beautiful!” 

And Samatella said, “I look beautiful because I want to get married.” 

And then the rooster said, “Can you want me?” 

I said, “Ok, let me so how you sing.” 

He said, “Kee-kee-ke-kee.” 

“Oh no no no no, I don’t like you. I don’t like you. I don’t like how you sing!”

So- anyway- after a little while, then you know- the lamb pass. He said, “Samatella you look beautiful!”

Said, “I look beautiful because I want to get married. And you want me?”

“Yes, I want you.”

“Let me see how you sing.”

And then he said, “Baa-baaa.” 

“Oh no no no no, I no like how you sing! I can’t married you.”

So, after a little while the jack-ass pass. He said, “Oh Samatella, you look beautiful!”

“I look beautiful because I want to get married. And you want me?”

“Yeah I want you.”

“But first I want to see how you sing.”

He said, “Hee-haw hee-haw hee-haw.”

“Oh no no no no, I no like how you sing! I no like how you sing!”

So, poor Samatella. After a little while then the mouse pass. He said, “Oh Samatella, you look beautiful!”

“I look beautiful because I want to get married. Oh- you want me?”

“Oh yes, I want you.”

“Let me see how you sing.”

And then the mouse said, “Eeep-eep-eep-eep-eep.”

“Oh I love you, I love you. I want to marry you.”

Okay. So- they got married and then you know they was on a Sunday and Samatella she went to church. When she went to church she had a- some pot in the top of the stove. And with beans. And Samatella said to the mouse, “No go open up, because then you go inside then- you know- you can’t get out!” So, the stupid mouse he stay- and he said- and he went to open the pot and *brrrrrrr* he went inside the pot. He try with the little feet to come out and he can’t come out. 

After the mass finish Samatella she went back home. When she went back home then- you know- the door they was closed. And Samatella she keep said to the mouse, “Open the door!” but the mouse don’t open the door because he was dead. So she went on the top of the roof and she o- she come out, down to the bedroom. And she look all over. She look all over and then she could find no mouse. 

“Mouse mouse mouse?” She look all over in the bedroom, she look under the table. Then she think about it and she said “Oh my god, I bet he went in the pot.” She open up the pot and the mouse, they was dead inside the pot.

So poor mouse! Samatella she pick up the chair again and she went outside. And she was cry, cry, cry. And the mouse- you know- after a little while then the lamb pass.

“Samatella, why you cry for?” 

“I cry because I lost my mouse.”

And the lamb- no, what it was- he had some grape. 

She said, “Oh boy, can you give me some grape?”

“Oh no, you no want to marry me. And you no get a grape from me. Goodbye!” Then he left.

Then after a little while, the rooster pass with some more- fruit. And he said, “Oh, Samatella why you cry for?”

“Oh, I cry because I lost my mouse. Oh, give me some fruit.”

“No, you no want to marry me, I no give nothing to you.”

So Samatella- the rooster took off.

So, anyway, this is the Samatella story. 

“So what happened to Samatella?”

Eh?

“What happened to Samatella?”

I don’t know what happened to Samatella. Samatella [says something in Italian]. Samatella she cry- she took the hair- pull out the hair. And that’s all- nobody care about Samatella.