Wednesday, July 21, 2010

La Seconda Settimana
Well, this has been some week.

I got strep throat and had to figure out how to get medicine. Everyone here goes to the pronto soccorso (emergency room)—even for regular doctor appointments. You can even make an appointment to GO to the emergency room. I went to triage early Saturday morning and F stayed home with T who I didn't want exposed to anything. There was only one emergency case for the whole time I was there and they categorized patients with different color papers and numbers which you could view on a TV screen to know how many cases of each level of urgency were ahead of you.

I kept repeating “quattrocentoquattordici” in my head so I would know when my number was called.

One of the triage doctors was really rude and told the other nurse that I was a rich American and probably thought I didn't have to wait like everyone else and then she mocked me for avoiding the handle of the triage room with my bare hand because I had forgotten the Purell. The doctor in the emergency room checked me for two seconds and gave me an appointment for an hour later with an ear, nose, throat specialist upstairs and he gave me an antibiotic without even doing a strep test. I paid at a little office upstairs and a nurse ran after me saying that the 52 euros I had paid was a rip off and that she wanted to figure out how I could pay less.

In the end, due to our foreigner status, it was resolved that the sum was correct (but I knew it would cost six times as much in NY). Anyway after three days I could swallow and talk again and then my stomach finally could take food again.

On the way back from the emergency room I have to admit that I went to Lucca's antique fair in the piazzas near the house and negotiated a deal for two gorgeous living room chairs before I took to my bed. T got a charm bracelet that she just loves. I am paying/bribing her to speak Italian every day until school starts so she can afford these bejeweled trinkets.

T spends hours on Skype (pronounced “sky-pee”) with her friend S everyday—playing video games, surfing fashion sites and creating their own blog SparkleGirl which we hope you will become a follower of as it is critical for their success.

Today she went to an aqua park with F to do high dives and slide down all the slides while I went to the Patronato to the immigrant aid people who said that the letter we got from the Chamber of Commerce should satisfy the questura (police station) and that F needs to bring it in tomorrow. Then hopefully he will get his nulla osta and come back to NY for his visa. We are looking to see what T and I need to do after that because there may be a loophole through which we could avoid having to go back to the Consulate, but we don't know.

The downstairs neighbors are really nice and they took T swimming and to a dinner at the grandma's house. T came home and said now that was some Italian food, implying that we have been depriving her in some way now that she had tasted the genuine article.

F has been working on stuff for Phoenix House and for Fattoria Colleverde and is loving not having to take the subway anymore. We heard a whole concert of Paolo Nutini clear as day from our bedroom window last night and he was good, unlike Crosby, Stills, & Nash who limped in here last week.

That's all for now!

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