Thursday, February 28, 2013

Ironic?
After six years of collecting documents and preparing and then finally moving to Italy with three suitcases a piece and a dream, it turns out everyone here wants to move to New York -- except us. The elections here were inconclusive and the government is such a mess that these are the two most popular posts on FB:

AND Let's pack the suitcases!


I had to Leggo my Eggo
First of all kudos to T who managed to find 100 pages of research on the internet to printout for an assignment on American realism for her art class in the amount of time allotted. In Italy if you don't pick the same topic that everyone else picks and you try to march to your own drummer, you will find that there is nothing in the library or online in Italian to use to form a bibliography for your project. Or so T tells me. And yet she did it anyway.

I did not fare so well this week. Things did not bode well from the jump. It was a new members carnival party night and despite the fact that the parking lot was full, I kind of knew that no one was going to come yet again on a Wednesday night at eight to take my class. What I didn't know was that curly haired teacher would take so much delight in it. She made sure to parade in with her dozen students at the beginning and the end of my class to return her monstrously over-sized weight bars and have a nice gloat session. She even called out to me while I was teaching and gave me a little wave. Seriously? I had three students. It was sad. Made only sadder by the fact that this embarrassing photo of me in pastels with a three quarter view and my leg and leg warmer covered arm is plastered on two giant billboards on the highway entrance that everyone in this city passes by all the time. It is so horrible that it is really funny. Tyra Banks would send me home immediately for that pose, but trust me that my photographer who has never heard of photoshop was a far cry from being Gilles Bensimon.

I have been having long conversations with a zit that was threatening to add the cherry on the sundae which is my face and explaining to it as nicely as I can muster that I have suffered enough already this week. Even my most devoted students are ruining all of their results by taking these macho man kind of classes which are the bulk of the offerings at most gyms, but I am not allowed to tell them that because we are not supposed to talk badly about any of the other classes. We are apparently allowed to create these fake dramas on FB like my curly haired colleague has, but that is another story.

I get all of my information about where my boss is concentrating his energies by looking at the FB page of the gym, which they update daily. This is how I found out that they are doing an open weekend two weeks from now and that I would be involved. I was worried when I saw that they are offering sexy chair class and I am not teaching it because I really need another five hours of work from them to become official. It turns out that the Jane Fonda lady is teaching it. She has let me know that all things burlesque are her territory, but the boss had proposed that I teach the class. I cornered my boss before class time and he said that I will probably be teaching burlesque this month for women's month. In Italy they don't have just Mother's Day in May, but Women's Day in March where everyone gives out mimosa flowers and Berlusconi tries not sleep with anyone more than forty years younger than himself. Jane Fonda will only be sexy on the chair for one special day. She has been at the gym for 17 years and I am pretty sure that she has more than five hours of work a week so I am not going to cry for her.

I finally found out where the instructors' changing room is, and unlike the 5 star dressing room the clients use, ours is a glorified and smelly unisex closet. The fancy gym's female clients all have rolling, over-sized backpacks with our logo on it that contain pads so that their feet never have to touch the spotless floor, bathrobes, slippers, make-up kits that look like the kind you see on America's Next Top model, and of course a change of shoes that includes stilettos. The instructor's changing room has cubbies with people's name in tape, but there is no space for me and so I just threw my coat over somebody else's on the hooks and dragged the rest of my gear up to the classroom. There is a thin white curtain that we are supposed to change behind, but I would never do that since there are men in there so I guess I will be hiding in the bathroom with the door closed, if I am ever that desperate.

Meanwhile, my personal training buddies are dropping like flies and those that I still have continue to cancel at the last minute a manca e a destra. Nevertheless, I don't take it personally because they still like me enough to invite me to dinner. 


He had a little run in with some rash cream.


Ah parent teacher conferences . . . what a $#&%*$ joy!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Good, the Bad, and the Brutta
The good news is that T's teachers love her very much. The parent teacher conferences went really well today. Her math teacher thinks that it is good she chose the hardest high school because she likes to rise to challenges and that I should reconsider letting her go on the overnight class trip. I don't feel comfortable with it, but I found it adorable that she even is going to call T's doctor to get her opinion about it.

Okay that is not all the good news. Today I also had about thirty people in my afternoon class at the fancy gym. The bad day was really Wednesday night when my class went head to head with a normal tonficazione class and that teacher was kind of territorial. The tone of the whole night was really tense and I had a poor turn out. Since then, however, the room has been packed. I even had a full room on Sunday when it was snowing and got a call from my boss who wasn't even at the gym to say that he heard that the class had been a huge hit. Plus a few new students confided in me that some of the real power player women at the club have been spreading the word that my class is the one to try. Yay!

I knew the other foot was going to fall so I had a huge list of questions when I went in today to get my contract. I found out that my current contract is only going to last ten days and then the gym is changing into a different kind of an entity and I will have another contract that I won't understand anymore than I understand this one and somehow I have to get my accountant/commercialista to review it in under 24 hours. I'm sure he has nothing more important to do. . .

I was all prepared for this important day of contract getting with five loaves of F's gorgonzola bread to reward this trainer Nicholas who is so sweet to me and always helps me to set up my music on the speakers, and to make some friends in general with my new coworkers, and to celebrate the contract with my bosses. I wanted to ask if I have to buy the fancy gym logo outfits or how everyone else got theirs and whether there were special lockers I was supposed to be using. Well, it turns out that after I sign the contract, I get the outfit and there is a whole changing room for staff that I didn't even know existed and that I still don't know how to find. It's amazing I can tie my own shoes, there is so much I don't know.

I am on the far right, looking the dorkiest I have ever looked in my life.
Here comes the ugly. As F drove me up to the gym tonight, I almost died. There was the huge billboard with me looking like
  • All of the other girls do not want to be my friend.
  • I have a weird cast on my arm that is actually a leg warmer  -- thanks for that styling tip, curly haired coworker from Wednesday night.
  • Beige got the memo and is also not my friend -- in so many ways.
I made F drive away from the main entrance so that no one would see me. He pointed out that no matter where we drove, everyone is going to see me. This poster takes up half the outer wall of the building. Even the t-shirt that I am finally going to get is going to have this ever so beige photo on it.
On the positive side, Cristiano, my bus buddy, feels that my biceps are still in good shape. And even though he didn't say goodbye to me when we got off the bus, he still smiled at me a lot at the bus stop and gave me the friendly tip that when he is not there, if I don't raise my arm, the bus driver will not stop for me. Good to know, my bespectacled friend, good to know.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

SIGH

Feel free to comment and tell me that these things also happen to you. Unless they never happen to you, and you just want to give me a friendly reality check to tell me that no, these things really only could happen to me.

 A 250 pound man fell on me as he fainted during a Domacic Method Bioenergy treatment that I was giving him for his colitis and bent my wrist backwards and tweaked my back. He was thrilled with the results on his colitis, and brought his mother back the next day for treatment on her arthritis, and both walked away happy customers.

I couldn't figure out which classroom was mine and I tried out my music in the classroom that ended up being the one the curly haired lady who hates me is using. She is the one who encouraged people to write on facebook about how my class better not be replacing hers. Her students shot daggers at me with their eyes. I offered to help her take down some equipment left over from the previous lesson and she told me in no uncertain terms that she was strong and didn't need my help. --um. okay.

I had a wardrobe malfunction during my first night class at the gym and had to ask a girl in the class to reattach my sports bra strap for me before I did a Janet Jackson at the Superbowl. There were only seven or eight students so it was pretty obvious.

Two of the most feminine guys I have ever met in my life asked me if the Metamorfosi choreography was going to be too feminine for them, and I couldn't be sure how they wanted me to answer this trick question.

A certain coworker (see above) hates me so much that I would not be surprised to see a horse head in my bed tomorrow with a curly mane and a red sweatshirt.

I spent the whole day studying the Pussycat dolls as if I had to give a dissertation on the subject. I actually feel like I may be dumber now.


Monday, February 18, 2013

Me and my Big Mouth
Man, that Beyoncè: Life is but a Dream documentary really did not disappoint. Completely inspired by it, I taught a 4 PM class at the fancy gym. My friend Alessandro gave me a lift so that I could warm up, that is dance, for an hour beforehand. The coworkers who don't hate me, really think I am weird. But I am all Beyoncè about that now, and I am okay with them talking about me behind my back as long as it does not compromise my artistic integrity. Just kidding. It is pretty lonely being new. Anyway, the thrilling thing about the fancy gym was that at four in the afternoon, I had twenty students. After work, my boss told me that my contract is not ready yet. I forgot to ask him for, at least, a sweatshirt. Kristina got a free one from the owner. As he handed it to her, I tried not to look too jealous. I'd settle for a tee shirt. All my coworkers are in uniform so it is a bit weird. What would Beyoncè do?

The gym owner Sig. Malfatti is on the far right. I want that sweatshirt, Kristina. (I am nowhere to be found.)

While I was waiting at the reception desk after work, I started to get worried about missing my bus home. They don't run very frequently. The man who told me what time it was said he was also going to take that bus. His name was Cristiano. He had one wonky eye and he spoke very slowly and had a weak handshake. I liked him instantly. He may have a mental health issue, but don't we all? He didn't want to walk with me to the bus stop because I told him I had to talk with the boss first and he, justifiably, did not want to make promises to strangers. He seemed happy to see me there and we had a nice conversation with the only weird part being that he kept feeling my bicep, telling me how strong I was, and challenging me to an arm wrestle next time we see each other. Otherwise, he did not sit with me on the bus, after showing me where to validate my ticket, and he was quick to say goodbye at the last stop, so I think my instincts were right and he is a decent guy with a keen interest in arm wrestling.

As I was leaving the gym, the boss said: be prepared. For what? I am going to be teaching sexi chair burlesque class now that Kristina has left the building. That is the way to be voted most slutty right off the mark. Good luck making friends with the other female instructors now, right? Oh me and my you know what. The funny thing about all this sexi business is that my students are for the most part middle aged women with bad knees, hips, or backs who want to regain mobility, strength and flexibility without being bored to tears. I mean that's sexi or sexy, but in a really PG kind of way. That is, until I have to start teaching burlesque. I have no idea how to count and be alluring at the same time. This has the potential to be really, really embarrassing. Yay blog fodder, but, you know, boo otherwise.
I am on the bottom right and Kristina is in the top middle. This was from sexi chair class.
My boss Giacomo.
Last night we broke the only device that allows us to refill T's insulin reservoir. I have no idea why we only get one of those twisty pens, but poor F had to drive to the hospital to get us a new one first thing this morning. It was a successful mission and all is well. Then on his way home, he got a key tip off from Melissa, Natasha's mamma, that today was the day to sign up for teacher meetings and he got us all signed up on the first try. Tonight I am going to do a Bioenergy treatment on Kristina's knee and tomorrow I am treating a friend of a friend's colitis. Things are about to get even weirder . . .

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Beauty & the Beast
I forgot to tell you about the appointment T had at the Meyer Children's hospital in Florence this week. She had a little trepidation about it because sometimes the doctors concern about the glycemic values can come across kind of "judge-y." In truth, the critiques she gets are because she is the model patient checking frequently to see how her numbers are and doing what she can to have them be as ideal as possible. She has turned the three month check of the average blood glucose value into a quest for perfection. I wonder where she gets this drive to constantly improve? Just kidding. And I'm sorry that I passed on all of my perfectionist tendencies. But I really don't want her to stress. In fact, the appointment went really well and she was thrilled to have a 6.2 average when the ultimate goal is a 6. After the business portion of the week was over and done, she concentrated on more fun things like her friend Ilenia's birthday bash. It was at a church rec room over in San Concordio. She didn't stay out too late, but just long enough to have everyone admire her new turquoise colored hair (just the tips).


Now on to the beast portion of this story. Remember how I was saying that I bowed out of the guest teacher's TRX class because I was worried I would get hurt by the body building 28(?)-year-old gymnast? Well, I probably should have pulled out a few minutes earlier. . . These bruises are just from hanging on to the straps and doing squats - which I hate, because they bulk up your thighs -- and some standing push ups. My class is the class this teacher will want to take after she has a kid and needs an effective way to stay in shape without getting hurt. I did some pretty wacko things when I was her age, too.

T said I look like I had a date with Chris Brown. . .
I had about ten people this Sunday morning for my class. About five of the women were 45 or older and they all told me they could only stay for ten minutes. All but one of them stayed the whole time. That is the Lucca elite good mannered way of saying If you try to make a fool of me, I'm out, yo. But I think I can build a following if I follow my daughter's keep on pushing mentality. She's my hero, 100%

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Sexi Chair
This is going down as a super freaky day in my history book. Let me back up to last night when I saw that where the new fancy gym had put my course hours was a face book discussion. The curly haired teacher who was at the photo shoot for Fit and the City with me wrote: "There is just one little detail you overlooked. That is my class time . . ." Then of course a bunch of her distraught students wrote: "I hope they are not canceling our class to put in that new one." And the gym responded that they were not taking away anything, just adding. Obviously this was a conversation that could have taken place in person, but let the manipulations and back stabbing begin. 

The guest teacher and my new boss guy.

Just a little intimidating.
I didn't sleep at all last night because F and I have a little cold and we are both dehydrated. Unfortunately, this condition causes F to smack  his lips in his sleep like a non-stop lemonade commercial. I didn't sleep a wink. This morning I had to go and take the classes of the new guest teacher. She came from San Francisco and she was slated to teach six hours in a row for one day only at the fancy gym. It was one of those you are cordially invited affairs where it was pretty obvious that attendance was mandatory. The teacher looked nothing like her competition photo. She looked much friendlier and less intimidating than she did in the publicity shot. She did not speak Italian so I got to hang out with her by default. She said her family had worked with the circus in Russia. After I saw her do a head stand completely supported only by TRX cords suspended from the ceiling, I did not doubt that for one second. She was wearing a knee brace and she told me that two months after she won that competition featured in the photo she was hit by a car when she was crossing the street. I had been planning to try to pitch the Domacic method bioenergy healing to my new boss as a treatment modality for the gym so I told her I would treat her during the break between the third and fourth classes.

The pilates fusion class involved the use of a towel under your bare feet to slide into squats and bridges and push ups and sit up postitions. She was very professional and knew the material so that everything timed out perfectly. I loved how she kept saying where to put our "booty" and my coworkers kept translating that as just move yourselves down to the edge of the mat. They basically toned down every word out of her mouth and it was hilarious because I always translate my silly quips literally into Italian and they either scandalize everyone or make no sense, but this chick never had the chance because it was all lost in translation.

This is Kristina. I'm in the third row, hearing my neck make popping sounds.
The real excitement of the day was her sexi (spelled with an i) chair class. They got all the chairs from the cafe. It was a burlesque class and the routine was easy enough for someone with no memory for steps like me to pick up. I had a blast with that one.

If this long cool drink of water didn't have to do suspension class, neither did I.
Then they did the Suspension class and I was so relieved when the Zumba teacher from Uruguay bowed out after the first ten minutes because her elbow hurt. My elbow was killing me and I got out just in time before they started the one handed, one footed, upside down push ups otherwise known as a really stupid thing to do if you are not a professional or if you are me.

I managed to get F to come with my documents in the lunch pause. I sat at the table with Kristina and her friends and my new boss because if I learned one thing from the cafeteria at Columbia Grammar & Preparatory school, it is that no one is ever going to send you an engraved silver invitation to join them at their table. I know this because I spent years waiting for one and eating by myself, if you really want to know. Well, times have changed and so has my choice of country. My boss wasn't going to have my contract ready until he got the documents so he got the documents. He wasn't going to have me pitch the bioenergy either, but I got Kristina and her friend into his office just before she had to go teach dance fusion, god bless her, and treated her knee. I will do three more days at a distance and I hope it helps her a lot. She was very sweet really and it was a fair trade.

Tomorrow is my turn to teach. Please please, don't let me be alone. That would be so not sexi.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

BEIGE and other indignities
 
This outdoorsy moment was brought to you by an outdoorsy mother. I was home hiding and being achey.
    
On Monday we had a snow day. T went sledding with her friends. I had a cold virus that somehow latched on to my myofibralgia and caused me to have muscle and nerve pain throughout my body, but mostly in my lower legs and back. I could not move. That was until my vanity got the best of me in the second part of the day and I realized that I still didn't have anything pink or beige to wear to the photo shoot. I put on my snow boots and shlepped out into the mess. Stores don't open in Lucca on Mondays until 4 PM and they close at 7 PM so I had blessed little time because at the rate I was moving I didn't get both boots on until 5 PM. Through the slush I slopped, dropping my umbrella in the umbrella holder by the front door of each shop, then off to the changing room to peel off the seven layers I had on. It was one horrendous pair of beige sweatpants after another. I ended up buying the most flattering tone of pink I could which was a bright, almost electric rose color but I could only find a shirt and a sweatshirt in that color and no bottoms other than a three euro mini skirt on sale at the Benetton outlet. The skirt was a bit too wide and it was a kind of linen blend that wrinkles if you look at it too hard. Then I found a pair of dark beige leggings and a long oatmeal colored tank top. I packed a bunch of black and gray stuff I would have preferred to wear, just in case. But nobody told me that the color scheme was supposed to be based on this picture:

 
I got to the gym, not even sure if I had the day and time right for the photo shoot. Italian. The phone. Two things that don't go well together. I had my hair done just in case.

Here I am feeling that something bad was about to happen. See the pink. WRONG pink.
 When I came in the nice receptionist named Evita told me that I should wait in the cafe until it was time for the swim instructor Chiara to take us to the photo studio some twenty minutes away. I saw the owner of the gym having his lunch, but he didn't say hello to me or signal for me to join him, so I just sat with my back to him and put on my ipod. This was not a move I would have made if I spoke Italian more fluently, but I just couldn't think on my feet.

Chiara was really sweet to me on the drive over. The photo studio was freezing cold. At first they told me there was no bathroom, but I really had to pee and thank goodness there was one. I went into the "changing room" which was really an adjunct room that the men kept opening the door of every other minutes about eleven times to try different options. After all 70 euros worth of my fuschia options were rejected, I was left wearing an old lady onesie that showed every flabular particular of my mid section. Beige is not my friend. I have an olive complexion and I am really short and on the curvy side, for the record. I tried to turn to the side and to hide behind the others, but the photographer insisted that I face front. I tried taking a wide stance that I thought looked better, but he told me I had to put my feet together. I tried to borrow stuff of the other women, but they didn't let me have anything except for one kind of stretched out ballet pink leg warmer to put on my arm. Yes, I don't know why. Did I forget to mention that my new colleagues apparently subsist solely on cigarettes and self tanner. Two of them wore bikinis. Thank you lord for not making me a water aerobics teacher. I was the biggest girl in the room. One of the women wore a playboy bunny bikini with the playboy logo on it and everything. I remembered her as the one with the sick body from last year's campaign. I felt like her before photo.
 
They put us in small groups and some solo shots. The rest of the staff is going to do their shots a different day and then it will all be edited together. While I had my turn, the owner of the gym reviewed the photos. He looked embarrassed for me. The other women stopped chatting to watch. I would have felt more relaxed in the snake tank on the set of Fear Factor.  Several times during the shopping and modeling segments of this installment I thought about going home to cry, but then I remembered that the worse my life gets, the funnier our blog gets. That thought gave me hope.
 
I am pretty sure that one of two things are going to happen: one they are going to edit me right out of that campaign or, if I am really unlucky, my old colleagues at the other gym are going to have a pretty hearty laugh when they see me in my fat suit onesie flanked by my new buff colleagues as they drive by the billboard on the entrance to the autostrada.


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Not without a hitch. . .ma e' andata 
Last night T's blood sugars kept going way high and we couldn't figure out why, but it was really stressful for all three of us. This morning everything was back under control, and I got up bright and early and came up with a slamming speech to describe Metamorfosi. Unfortunately, when I had to actually say it, it forgot to come out in Italian. It's like someone pushed the English Only button in my brain. I looked up into the club owner's eyes and I forgot my own name. After that things got worse, before they got better.

My new boss Giacomo came in to adjust the microphone. It was good news that they even thought I would need a microphone because at eleven sharp there were only ten of us, and those were the people who I invited. Five minutes later there were twenty of us and I started the warm up without the microphone. Then it was time to do the choreographed segment for the arms that I have gone over and over a thousand times. It was going to be a crowd pleaser. They put a headset on me and a mike pack down my pants - which sounds more enjoyable than it was - and everytime I opened my mouth to speak the words came out mega loud and the music went away. I made the executive decision to throw the whole apparatus on the floor and continue without the microphone. I imagine this really pissed off the technician guy and probably annoyed my new boss, but I couldn't let the song go to waste.

When  I looked up into the sea of people three songs into the audition/Master class, I realized that there were fifty students, including three brave men. I was really moved that ten people came out for me to a gym that they don't belong to just to give me emotional support. Afterwards, people were happy and they asked Giacomo if he was going to hire me, and he said yes. They took a group picture that I'll add in if they put it up on FB. We all yelled Metamorfosi at the camera. And here is the best part: the photo shoot on Tuesday is for Fit and the City, part 2 and I get to do it! Now I just have to find something beige to wear that isn't hideous.





I had danced my butt off for the hour before the class started. The windows are kind of tainted so I didn't look out, but at one point one of the trainers brought two little boys in to see what I was up to. It was very cute. Come to think of it, I don't know what they thought of the dancing, but maybe that is for the best. I came home and have a sore throat and headache and aching everything and it is supposed to snow tomorrow here, but I don't care because today is finally a done deal. Yahoo! Meanwhile T has some girls over for a board game marathon and is very happy. F is baking us a batch of flour-less chocolate chip cookies and all is good with the world.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Will I be there this time around?
Last time the fancy gym did an ad campaign with all of the female teachers, I was so jealous that I ate my heart out. A play on Sex & the City and fitness, two of my favorite things, and I was too busy being loyal to the wrong people, apparently, to get a piece of the action. The lady on the phone yesterday, whose name I wish I knew, told me I could be a part of the next photo shoot, but only if my class is a success tomorrow. And, as my friend Elena pointed out, how the heck are they going to measure the success of the class? I'm measuring it as successful if I am not alone, I don't pee myself or shout obscenities and nobody gets terribly hurt or sets their hair on fire. Too much to ask for? Fingers crossed.

Stick around for the second half of the video; that's where the magic happens:

Friday, February 08, 2013

Not saying a word
 Sorry for not having written. I am trying to set the world's record for most exercise done without ever leaving the house. I have barely left the house in five days. I am too nervous to think straight, and, ironically, I didn't want to do anything out on the cobblestones that would make my tendon any worse. Sunday is the big Master class/audition at the fancy gym and the run through I did today at home was a complete disaster.
Here is a random shot of T on the way to school.
F has been teaching English to these guys. They love Flo Rida, god bless 'em.

t
Totally wrong. These are boys from T's class and study group. I know nothing.


Below are some shots F took from his friend Fabio's birthday. F got him some cool headphones as a birthday present. The twins Kristoff and Johaness were also in attendance. They only eat raw foods now and so they are really Tracy Anderson thin.



I couldn't stand it anymore, so I made plans to meet up with my friends Sabrina and Patrizia. First, I walked around the walls of Lucca with my headphones in, trying to rehearse in my head. While I was out with the girls, I got a call from the fancy gym saying that IF my class goes well there is another photo shoot on Tuesday with all of the female teachers; and, by the way, I need to wear an all beige or pink sport outfit to usher in the Spring. What happened to the Cadbury chocolate egg commercial as a sure sign that Easter is coming? Who the heck looks good in pink and beige workout wear, apart from the twins and Tracy Anderson? So I laid down some cash on a pink top and tights because that was all that I could find. That is my version of thinking positive. The only thing that keeps me sane (and I use the term loosely) is watching the promo for the documentary on Beyonce that is supposed to air on HBO next Saturday, and praying that I catch some Sasha Fierceness at the very last minute.

Friday, February 01, 2013

Am I having a Carrie Bradshaw moment?
 
This is off their FB page. I am so getting arrested.
Remember the episode of Sex & the City where Carrie is all excited to see the poster of herself at the bus stop, but when the bus passes by it has a obscene graffiti on it? Or the one where she is supposed to be on the cover of a magazine and the photo of her ends up being just horrendous? I think that just happened to me. This is poster sized at the gym and they are passing them out to the three thousand clients. Oy. I look like I am sneering and my hair looks like a weave. Plus what position am I in? Awkward. P.S. Didn't F already do this the other day, but better?




Today I went and taught three of the female fitness instructors. I made the class pretty difficult, but not too difficult. They were really good at following and they had perfectly perfect bodies. The boss guy Giacomo sat there and watched with a woman from the PR department. It was beyond intimidating. The instructors were really nice. Only Elisa smiled at me during the lesson, but the other two smiled at me afterwards which is also important. Giacomo didn't give me a single compliment, but he didn't give me any criticism either. There is always the possibility that Ms. You-Know-Who Anderson will put a horse's head in my bed tonight, but that's a risk I am going to have to take.

Thank goodness Patrizia was able to give me a ride home because otherwise I would have to walk home for almost an hour to get home or wait an hour and a half for a bus. There are no sidewalks and the cars come close to the edge of the road. And it was raining. My next problem is that Giacomo gave me forty announcements to pass out and expects me to bring at least 20 amiche with me. I called twenty friends and only two of them have gotten back to me. If I don't get a full room, I might not get the job. I don't know if I mentioned that I did today after I went to the osteopaths who use some kind of energy treatment to cure my tendinitis. They said it was all blocked from an old injury and could hardly move my foot. It took two of them to pull my foot and I didn't feel a thing because of the energy they were sending me. Shoot forward five hours when I was lifting my client's baby and my back started spasming. I have no idea how I got myself back into one piece for today, but I think those crazy doctors unblocked something in a good way. I'm going back next week to them and the German Barbie skin doctor. It takes a village. Literally.

I just found out (from T, my official news source) that they are predicting more earthquakes for us and they have evacuated some folks outside of the walls.  A client of mine got a call at midnight from the Protezione Civile and her familly moved into the part of her house that is more structurally stable to sleep in.