I asked a friend of mine to accompany me to the superstore nearby in search of Italian school supplies. School supplies are different enough that the chance of me locating and purchasing the correct items is slim. I enlisted an Italian's help. She agreed to accompany me, but after a quick look at the list, suggested that a trip to a cartolibreria would be a better choice.
And this is how it went . . .
We parked illegally just in front of the very small stationary/school & office supply store, walked in & promptly greeted the owner and young clerk. I handed over the list and the two of them proceeded to gather one supply after another, all of which were located behind their counter. When a choice of color or notebook cover was needed, we were properly consulted. If, by chance, something is incorrect, we just have to pop on in and trade it. (The store is located conveniently across from the school.) We finished in less than fifteen minutes, received a 20% discount card valid for this purchase and throughout the academic year, and made acquaintance with the owner of the conveniently located shop. The car remained illegally parked throughout the visit without consequence.
Now, I am aware that the prices I paid at the family-run business are likely more than I would have at a store similar to Target or (God forbid) Walmart; however, there are times in life when small is better than big, full service beats self service, and time is as valuable as money.
Later I'll attempt to share some details about those supplies, which, in fact, are not completely different from an American supply list. I love school supplies, don't you?