Sunday, June 15, 2014

Excuses, blackouts, and other disasters
Excuse my absence from the blogosphere, but we lost all internet connection when our Infostrada service collapsed in all of Italy. At first T was so devastated that you would have thought that the internet was her personal source of oxygen, but I couldn't even silently mock her dependence because after a day and a half without internet I started to have trouble breathing freely, as well, and the panic set in. My day two or so I was scarcely gasping from my Pinterest and So You THink You Can Dance withdrawal, but now all is right with the world.

T went to school and braved the elbows of the gazillion kids who were all summoned to school to read the bulletin board with their fates posted on it. I woke up early and got dressed to the nines to accompany her because there was the possibility of a teacher meeting, but half way there we met a classmate who was parent free and so T disentangled herself from us. It turned out only the parents of kids who have to do extra work this summer or take an exam in September to reunite with their class next year had to meet with the professor. T apparently was pushed and shoved by the crowd and found out that she passed with a glorious 7.5 when her face was smooshed up against the glass of the bulletin board and her peers pushed and shoved their way forwards in an attempt to memorize not only their own grades but to check out what everyone else got. An older girl stepped in on T's behalf and freed her from the press of the crowd saying, "It's kind of intense the first time, isn't it?" And T said she felt just like a first year getting a hand from a more experienced Gryffindor at Hogwarts. In total six of her classmates failed the first year and nine of them will have to do extra work if they want to come back next year so her class has probably already shrunk from 28 kids to about 20.

It has been a humid 90 degrees here all week and the White Party organizers refused to back down from their preparations even though the weather report called for more freaky thunderstorms like the one that two days ago involved a tromba d'aria and a hail storm with hail as big as the polka dots on Minnie Mouse's skirt. I bowed out of that because of having been poisoned. My alternative medicine guy gave me too big a dose of vitamin B6 and I have spent the last week being excessively thirsty and having the kind of nerve pain that is so severe that at one point one of my legs went completely numb. I was just about to go to the emergency room when F's online research revealed that I am so sensitive that even a little vitamin can take me out. I can't tell if the DIM supplement that I am praying will end my cystic acne is starting to work because it takes two months to build up in your system and in the meantime I had that weird reaction to the sulphates in the mineral water that made me break out, and, now I learn that B6 can cause acne, too. Last night I woke up for the fourth night in  a row having to drink liters of water to flush this crap out of my body and I had a huge crevice in my leg that bruised me to the bone and was due to sleeping on a creased blanket. That is how sensitive I am. I am getting knocked off my feet by water, vitamins, and my blankie. I give up.

Here's what I missed. Based on these photos, it looks absolutely adorable:

Anyway, the White party managed to go on despite a brief thunderstorm at around two in the afternoon  because the real sky shattering storm didn't arrive until eleven at night when all of the bleached outfits were probably in the laundry pile of the over five hundred people who had RSVP'd. I disappointed a core group of my friends and swarms of hungry mosquitoes by not going to the White Party, but at least I didn't disappoint Patrizia who was counting on me to celebrate her 52nd birthday with her at her favorite ice cream place outside of town. I shlumped along and it was worth the total dehydration I faced last night to have at least met and possibly exceeded her expectations.

T's end of school party outfit.

Having not slept a lick last night, I am writing this instead of taking a nap because everytime I close my eyes, this crazy band which may or may not be dressed in medieval costumes as they love to do here starts blasting. Right now they are playing that military funeral song, "Taps," but earlier they were going at it to "When the Saints Coming Marching In." I hate tourist season. Ah, it turns out that Italy beat England in the World Cup Soccer tournament last night. I will probably never sleep again.

Which leads me to my final piece of news which is that my neighbors who have been patently and almost psychopathically rude to us since day one, not only have a drum set and no sense of common decency, but they also are nudists. I caught up with the elderly couple who I believe are brother and sister (weird) who live downstairs from the extended family of socially menacing people who live across from us and whose terrace is arm's reach from our kitchen/dining room windows. I asked the lady what she thought about the new precussion section that has been recently added to our lives and she said that it was the least of her worries. It seems that not only is the head of the family who I have seen in his underwear many a time on the terrace now going commando, but his wife has also been spotted in her birthday suit in front of the children, no less. I was reassured that if they continue to cause noise pollution we will all get together and try to get them to stop. The night after the drum "concert" they let their youngest daughter listen to the Italian equivalent of Barney the
dinosour videos in which children sing annoying overly sweet and repetitive camp songs over and over and over again at top volume while we were trying to eat dinner. It made me almost miss the drumming. Stay tuned because my next move is to photograph those nudie mean people.

On a positive note, I found a cool table for the living room at the antique fair and we got some washable fabric to replace the food absorbing velvet seat cushions on our dining room chairs. Also I may have forgotten to mention that F's football team the Broken Grandpas won the last game of the season in a resounding and spectatcular way and he was proclaimed by a unanimous vote the MVP.

I know it's not everyone's taste. But I LOVE it.

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