Monday, April 24, 2017

Today we woke up even earlier and got to the questura even before Emmanuel got there. I greeted some of the crowd in pidgin English and played a 2face song that Emmanuel and I like on blast to keep everyone's spirits up. I saw a guy who arrived before me not push to get to the front of the line. He let people keep passing him, but when it was almost time for the office to open, he went past them all to the door. I asked him what number he was in line and if I was immediately after him. His face let me know he was being slick. I told him, whatever your plan, I'm with you because I am not playing the rookie today. A man with a six or seven year old boy cut me in line and later told me that he was going to be late for work. It was then that I started to suspect that we were not going to make an orderly entrance. 

I did see my bald, grumpy, agent, who I love so well, arrive for work. He was happy because tomorrow the office is closed for Italian liberation day. I called out to him with a giant smile on my face, You are going to be so proud of me today! I am so well prepared! He chuckled. So that was a good, positive sign.

This was after one of the officer's cleared everybody out of the waiting room.

When I registered T for Huggs pre-school in Park Slope, I got up at dawn to be the first in line. I told everyone who came after me and my friend Sherry, we are crazy number one, you are crazy number two and so on. But due to the array of languages spoken, I did not try to line everyone up. When the doors opened people started pushing and the officer told the crowd that if they did not enter one by one, she would close up shop. One man in a blue puffy jacket who came late to the party, but seemed to represent an Albanian or Romanian family, was violently pushing all the people around him. I told him to calm down, and not to hurt the woman in front of him and  keep encouraging the crowd as loudly as I could to remain peaceful. Suffice to say, about three dozen people entered in front of me, even though I should have entered at about number 17 if things were honest and at about number two, if I was sneaky. It looked like we were going to have about a three hour wait. I turned to Emmanuel. I got it, he said. Somehow that man surfed the crowd and ended up with ticket number eight! The man who entered with me had number 35, to give you an idea of the difference. 

I am thinking of taking up stomach crochet ..

We waited for about an hour and my stomach turned into knots. I saw the two African guys ahead of us were having trouble communicating so I went up to translate for them. I was successful in making the bald agent's life easier and then it was my turn. He gave us one paper to fill out, but told us that to do what we need to do for Emmanuel, which is called a C3, we need to come back Wednesday. My boss won't let me skip work that day, so, hopefully Courtney will go with Fraser and flirt in my place with whoever the inspector in charge turns out to be. We have to get it done on Wednesday or the job won't be there any more. I feel tortured. But we are making progress. 

We watched this little girl make friends with everyone in the room, including two nuns, with whom she spoke perfect Italian. She asked them why they wore glasses, and then, as a follow up questions and without malice, she asked them why they were old.

Emmanuel and I filled out the form in the car. And now back to something different, new, and exciting: more waiting.

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