Monday, February 02, 2015

The one that is like the other ones

Sometimes there are only so many times that I can tread the same ground and go back to the same well regarding my tales of life in Italy. Is it really all that novel anymore to tell the story of how we recently went five days without hot water and I had to heat up water on the stove like we were on Little House on The Prairie so that we could take baths and three different plumbers came on three different days and agreed that the hot water heater was broken before leaving without fixing it, never to return?

Does anyone really need to read about how our house alarm has gone off on two more occasions in which we were completely helpless to do anything to stop it?

Or how one of our anti-gypsy steel gates got all snagged and twisted and when the landlord sent repairmen to fix it, one stood outside on the balcony, the other stood inside our living room, they both pulled on the count of three, uno due, tre and it snapped in half, and the two men shrugged in the very Italian oh well, what can you do? gesture before not only leaving the broken pieces of gate on either side of the window, but leaving the apartment altogether, never to return?

Or how I was waiting in line at the grocery store  and a woman got out of line, leaving her basket of food near the very very very very long line (How long was it? Well my dear readers, it was so long that the cashier finished three espressos and took four phone calls before it was my turn in line) and then when it was finally my turn to check out, I looked around to see if the woman was anywhere nearby as I know Italians find a grocery basket an acceptable means of saving their place in line and I couldn't find her, so I went ahead and emptied my cart onto the conveyor belt and so did the the person behind me (who had, of course, tried to step in front of me in line by pretending I wasn't there per Italian line custom) at which time, of course, the woman whose grocery basket had been pushed aside returned and she then proceeded to berate me for not honoring her place in line and physically pushed past me and shoved my groceries back to the beginning of the conveyer belt and then unpacked her basket of groceries in front of mine? And how I was gaping like a fish out of water, all Italian indignities fleeing my mind like a snuffed out candle and so I was forced to sputter my fury in English and it was just like Frances McDormand in Friends With Money in that  I was freaking out and no one around us so much as raised an eyebrow because that is just how things are here?

In case you were wondering, my current use of cliches is at four.

And hey, here's some pictures:

sometimes the hanging laundry is charming beyond belief.
but sometimes it looks like this.

For realz? Worst idea since Segway tours over the cobblestones. 

So this guy pulled over, whipped out his laptop and two smart phones. "That's what I call a mobile office," said Mike. Ba Da Dum! 

Don't you love random finds?

Oh. Never mind. Clearly this is the reason for the above mangled action figure. Ain't no one  gonna stop a T-Rex.
flying into Italy looks like this. Aren't photos from airplanes right up there with pictures of people's dinners in the race for who cares?

The day of the Befana is January 5. So seeing a Befana on January 28 is the Italian equivalent of leaving your Christmas lights on year-round.

perhaps the best part of this graffiti is how it is written in proper Slayer  font

Most of the Most yo. Wrap your mind around that one.
hey, so that's pretty.
ditto. and again:

This is what separates people who live here from people who are visiting.  My son read that the bags from our flight wouldn't be available for 15 minutes and without even consulting me, grabbed our backpacks, sat down and opened a book. Because he knew that if we saw our luggage before 9:30 we could call it a post-Christmas miracle. 

this may look like we witnessed the second time it has snowed here in 30 some years, but it's not snow...
it's hail!

but it was almost like snow and therefore very, very exciting. Also exciting because the hail was setting off car alarms but it did not set off our house alarm!

I was riding the metro (no, no, not Line C, because even though the mayor claims to have ridden Line C, no one believes him because There Is No Such Thing As Line C), and out of the corner of my eye noticed a man wearing sunglasses. This in and of itself was not worth noting because everyone here wears sunglasses in the metro and the grocery store and during Mass. They hand out sunglasses when you purchase your obligatory black puffer jacket. (Wow, look at me dispensing all these amazing insider tips to looking like a native! Don't drive teeny golf carts covered in plastic, don't pretend your luggage is arriving at the baggae claim, wear a black puffer jacket and sunglasses…)

Anyway, so what made this man's sunglasses noteworthy was that they weren't the kind that the kids are currently wearing. In fact, the sunglasses were jogging a memory at the corner of my mind that I was trying desperately to catch… and then it came to me: Laurence Fishburne as Morpheus! That's where I had seen those sunglasses. Wow, that guy must really like The Matrix, thought I.

And then he and I both got off at the same metro stop. And naturally the escalators weren't working and so we had to take the stairs. And I was behind the guy with the Morpheus sunglasses. And he was wearing this coat:

Now THAT was a good day.

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