I rode the bus illegally yesterday morning on my way to Santa Maria Novella. La fiducia. It was the first day of March, and my abbonamento was therefore expired. In my defense, I was on the bus in order to buy my new bus pass!
I felt like a badass, like a rebel (and then like a poser, because it is probably the biggest rebellion I'll stage here), but mostly I felt like an Italian. Fight the system, right?
Well, that evening on my way home, new abbonamento in hand and freshly stamped, I saw my first verificador. I was legal! I was legitimate! I was (hopelessly) American. On that ride, the bus-police, as I call them, caught not one, not two, but FIVE would-be free-loaders.
They sucked it up and paid their fine, their faith in the validity of their honor system not shaken but rather confirmed by the fact that they had been caught. Because if there was no chance of being caught, no threat of punishment, there would therefore be no need to trust in that time they would NOT be caught--faith in that one time, which stretches into a hundred times, until la loro fiducia comes to rest in the act of being caught rather than the act of getting away with something.
Oh Italia... I know something in me is changing when all of this is actually making sense.