Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Do OVER!  
Yesterday pretty much sucked. At dinner time I was skyping with the landlords of the house in Montecatini, begging them to write a hospitality letter for Emmanuel so that he could renew his permesso. They agreed, but did not send the papers until after midnight. I did not sleep well. We got Emmanuel and had a later start than we would have liked. We didn't know that Mondays are the worst day to try to get business done at the police station in Montecatini, or that they had a new policy which decrees that foreigners must wait outside in the cold for the three hours that they do business in the morning. While Emmanuel and I waited in line, I defended our place in line by chatting with absolutely everyone. I charmed some and annoyed the absolute crap out of others. I defended us from people who wanted to jump ahead, and I assigned everyone a number, given that there was no numbered ticket machine. F took Jennifer to go baby food and diaper shopping, while I was out in the humid chilly air, shivering and shaking. After three hours, we finally got to see the officer and she pointed out that my dear husband had misprinted the date on the document, rendering it invalid. It probably would not have mattered because she upped the ante, saying that she wanted only original documents, something impossible to do when the landlords live in Albania, and also the landlord's passport, which we didn't have. It was not fun.

Day 1, Questura of Montecatini

Day 2, the early bird gets the worm!

This morning we woke up at the crack of crack. Actually, I woke up at 4 AM because F was stress talking in his sleep. I checked the email only to find that the landlord did not send her passport. I did not get back to sleep until 5 AM. Today we were smart. We met Emmanuel on line, he got there second. We chatted away with crazy number one, who arrived even before we did. I was sad I didn't bring cookies for all our friends from yesterday who showed back up to join the party. They also needed different, better, other papers to state their cases. Today the officer was in a lovely mood. She let us leave the line to make a copy that was missing and stamped the hospitality letter with a flourish. I don't know why. Maybe getting there earlier, you get the police when they are fresher. Maybe she just enjoys a good power trip. It doesn't matter, because, honestly, she was in the right and I was in the wrong yesterday. And God bless her, for giving us the stamp today.  

I arrived back at Tina's to find her giving Peace the full spa treatment. She smelled so delicious, I cannot even tell you. Peace is not fond of the facial moisturizing or the hair oiling, but she gave five stars to the full body massage, the warm water splashes, and the general body lotion application.


spa treatment


The train isn't working between Montecatini and Lucca, so we gave Cool and Job a ride to Pescia, where I haggled with some lovely tax office workers for forty-five minutes about how best to add Tina and Job's names to the rental contract. They need the contract to qualify for welfare benefits for the baby. The two ladies looked at Peace's photo and then argued about how best to get her the money. Peace does that to people. I got all their advice in writing for Job to bring back to the rental agent. The problem was that creating a new contract would cost us like a thousand euros, but by doing some bureaucratic blah blah blah, I'll spare you the details, it costs a fraction as much. 

Then we took the guys to an interview at a large employment agency, where the friendly, mustachioed interviewer spoke perfect English. I also made copies of the forms translated into English so they can learn how to fill out documents when I'm not there. We made them CV/resumes that they also brought to a pizza parlor in town. It was a winning day. 

I came home to find out that a big paper machinery company wants to hire me for several full days a week to teach English all day long to their staff! If it works out, I might be able to start in November and it will last several months.

Yesterday in the midst of everything, Glory rang my bell for her Italian lesson. I taught her what to say for her hearing in front of the Refugee Commission and the name of a ton of stuff she doesn't have at the moment like furniture, windows, and pets.

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