Sunday, April 24, 2016

You don't know  
I wish I could go back to last week's me and say, oh honey, you don't know what rough is.
After trying and failing to get other people to contact Emmanuel's lawyer for me to confirm that she had the proof I think he needs to not get deported, I finally took matters into my own hands. Although the email address Emmanuel had given me was a fail and she wouldn't take my phone calls, I realized that I still had her cell number and I could just text her. When I did, she confirmed that she did not have the documents and said that it was now too late. I begged her to amend the appeal and she said she would try, but didn't know if the judge would accept it. 
Then I counted to ten and wrote to the catholic charity's lawyer. Twice she ignored the parts of the emails that had to do with Emmanuel and when I underscored this she wrote me back a more formal letter than usual saying that she had already told me that she is in contact with Emmanuel's excellent lawyer and that I should let the professionals do their jobs. 
Well, I wanted to say, the professionals didn't share the documents on time for starters. But I didn't. 
Then I realized that despite having been vaccinated, I had the full-on flu with raging fever, body aches, nausea, dizziness, and just for good measure a huge acne cyst on the side of my nose.
My big worry was that I would not be able to accompany Cool and Paul to the job interview with the Michelin star chef who said he needed dishwashers. I decided not to confirm our appointment because I didn't want to give him room to wiggle out of it. Instead I sent F and also T, who we had to get out of school an hour early, to do the Italian part. I sent her with a cheat sheet of notes. It was in English, but still. The guys were excited and I was anxious. Of course, the chef was not there. His staff reached him by phone and he said he was meeting with his accountant in a different city. He did not ask to reschedule. He did not respond to my text begging him to let us reschedule later in the day. Cool and Paul then waited around to find out and when they got to the train station they discovered that due to the holiday on Monday the Friday afternoon trains were not running (so Italian!) and they had to endure a terrible confusion and eventual bus ride back to Montecatini. 
Then Jennifer called me to let me know she had faxed some documents we needed from her to update her permesso and asked me for money to renew her Nigerian passport. Earlier in the week she asked for the spelling of my name so I can have permission to be in the birthing room with her. This is a weird communication problem because I know Jennifer has never been wild about me. I said to call me if she needed anything and so I cannot be surprised if she does. I told Cool that I would advocate for her if she is not being treated well in the hospital because I would. But I am not looking forward to getting a view of Jennifer's nether regions or hearing her curse out everyone, including me in the labor room. ah well.
So I wrote back the lawyer saying just to let you know what kind of day I'm having . . . and I recounted the day's events with the explanation that due to language difficulties and cultural differences, our lives in Lucca are a continual series of misadventures and that she should know that between preserving my dignity or their opinion of me and helping my group, I was going to choose the group every damn time. In fact, if I had worried less about angering the lawyers in the first place, I might have gotten Emmanuel his documents on time. So that was cringe worthy. Just sitting in my unglorious truth of dirty bathwater.
And I didn't even mention the long and dismal phone conversation I had with the director of a cooperative with the same name as the cooperative that I believe provides job training to immigrants tell me that I had the wrong idea about the work that they did. I had gotten his name from my journalist students who thus far has tripped me up more than once. After I hung up the phone, I found an email from the lady I actually wanted to reach consenting to meet with me on Tuesday! But then a third cooperative, the one that was kind of condescending to everyone about learning Italian, called to ask me to teach the staff English. And they really do provide job training, so I said yes. Yes in a pissy you were supposed to call me a month ago kind of way, but yes all the same. And then I discovered that they pay 50 euros and hour. So that is good. I can give fifty to Jennifer.
As long as I'm listing all of the humiliating episodes of the week I should add the part where I begged one of my students to get the phone number of the person I wanted to call Emmanuel's lawyer for me. She said I should call after eight at night. That is late so I texted first, asking if I could call and she didn't answer. So I called and she hung up on me. And that's when I got the stomach ache that told me that Emmanuel's future was more important than being a people pleaser.
I still don't know what to do about the chef. I am praying that I don't give F or T the flu. I am hoping that I can handle the Tina/dog-walking situation that starts tomorrow and that I don't cough up a lung in the process. 
How long until summer vacation?
Oh and p.s. did I tell you that when T goes to college, I want to move to Puglia?
The only good thing that happened to me this week was that my tumblr idol TVhousehusband liked my post comparing the cast of The Real Housewives of New York City with that of The Mary Tyler Moore show. 
He wrote back: Fabulous :) Thank goodness, because I am in a fragile state where a snarky comment from tvhousehusband could have really annihilated me.

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