Foto Friday: Walking Potatoes

walking fried potatoes chip shop patat fries
From year to year with my Utrecht blog, I’d do a Foto Friday series. They were either photos that I really liked, but just didn’t have much to say about, or they were photos that weren’t so great, but they amused me for some reason or another. I feel like starting that again. Today’s foto falls under the latter category.

It was a quick shot on the go, taken mainly because it reminded me of the chip shops in Utrecht (and the Netherlands in general). Both are essentially hole-in-the-wall places where you don’t go inside at all. You order right there on the street/sidewalk/portico. This one — one could say being stereotypically Italian — is called Amor di Patata/Love Chips, or perhaps more realistically love of chips/fries/friet/frites/patat. To be honest, I’ll take stereotypical Italian amore over the name of one of the more popular Dutch chains, which is Manneken Pis. Now, the potatoes are excellent at Manneken Pis, but the name (as they’re supposed to be Belgian/Flemish style) refers to that famous Belgian statue/fountain of a little boy peeing. Perhaps not the most appetizing association!

The other thing that amused me about this is the tag line written over the serving area. It says: patatae fritte da passeggio. Ultimately, it basically means “fries to-go”, but when you’re still learning the language and tend to take things more literally, it becomes “fried potatoes walking”. [Insert your own “Dead Man Walking” joke here.]

Hey, get your laughs wherever you can find them!

Also, apologies in advance. After spending the last eight+ years in the Netherlands (and watching a lot of BBC), having a British mother, but still being a native-born citizen of the US, I have no consistency in which term I use for fries/chips/patat/patatae fritte/frites/friet/etc. Most often, though, I will use fries, chips, or patat, but with no regard to the primary language or audience. It’s whatever comes out first!

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4 comments

  1. haha! I love it! “fried potatoes walking” !!
    I still have a lot of fun with the Dutch language; I reckon it’s a newfound fun for you with Italian!

    1. I know just enough to be amused easily, still. Then it comes down to whether a native speaker gets the joke or just tries to pedantically give you a grammar lesson. 🙂

    1. I’ve heard north/south, too, but it also seems to be a case-by-case basis now. Who knows! I tend to use patat more, but there are certain times when frites works better. I should probably stick with patat here, as it’s at least slightly closer to Italian! 🙂

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