30 April 2008


I'm back. We got a taxi to the airport in England, and back from the airport in Naples. The taxi driver tried to rip us off both there and here. There's something kind of homely about that. In England the pre-paid taxi driver said he hadn't been paid when he obviously had been, whilst the Napoletano taxi driver did the usual trick of charging us something like 17.10 and not having the change for a twenty. Same old same old. Much to his disappointment I got my reserve change purse out and gave him the exact money. Teach him. Taxi driver this side didn't wear a seat belt and reeked too.

I'm molto annoyed that I left my bacon and sausage import in the hotel before leaving. We stayed in a hotel the last night you see, and I put my packets of bacon and sausage in a cool bag on the window ledge so they'd keep cool. And that's where they stayed. Boo hoo.

27 April 2008

Buona Domenica

I'm at my parent's house in England. It's drizzling but everything is so lovely. The house is so sturdy and quiet - a *complete* welcomed contrast to Naples. There's a garden with tulips and a shed which smells of treated wood. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to live back here - buy a house, work 9-5 etc... But I know that once you have to work and live day to day regular life, then things are different - tutto il mondo e' paese, etc (~ it's the same all over).

I can now blog from here now that my parents are connected to the world :) The keyboard is English e non mi trovo :D

23 April 2008

If only all bills were like this

Gas bill total to pay: 0.00 euro.

For anyone wondering why this is, in Italy if you don't communicate your usage, then the gas/electric company "guesses" what you've used. After some months when they eventually get a reading, they straighten things out so you either end up with an enormous bill because you've not paid enough, or you get a zero bill because they guessed wrong and you paid too much.

Luckily for us this time it was the latter! Phew.

20 April 2008


It's been lovely weather today. 26 degrees the weather man says. This is about as hot as I'm comfortable with to be honest. Any hotter and I get a bit grumpy.

We bought some new curtains the other day and tried to put them up with "mille chiode" yesterday. Mille chiode is called "no nails" in England. On the UK ad it shows a chair stuck to the wall (with "no nails") and someone sitting on it, so I thought curtains would stay up no problem, but no, not even the rail would hold up. Granted, it was a child sitting on the chair on the ad, but surely he weighed more than a curtain rail. So off we went to buy a drill. We went to Leroy Merlin - so much choice in there. I somewhat begrudge spending money on stuff like drills and can't help equating the cost to a pair of shoes/new clothes, but apparently one needs to have these things. The good thing about being in a rented house is that we can both practice how to use a drill. Curtains are now up, just need to turn them up as they're bunched up on the floor at the bottom. Will leave that for another time, what with Sunday being the day of rest.

10 April 2008


Yesterday I had my second trip to a newly found dentista. I think it might be a case of third time lucky as it is the third dentist I’ve been to here. First one took two hours to pull a tooth, second kept me waiting in the waiting room for two hours. Time wasters really annoy me.

The new one sent me off for an xray after the first visit so he could see the extent of what work I’ve already had done, plus see any other underlying problems. This meant I had my first taste of the Italian health service - wow. I got a note/prescription from my GP (who I’ve never seen), then I took this to a clinic who did my xray. I was very impressed by the clinic, great staff, very efficient and professional. Sat in the waiting room I noticed they even had a comments box! Everyone seemed to go in before me, but this can happen. They had a really weird numbering system, so even though I was number 16 it didn’t mean I came anywhere near 15. Molto confusing.

Yesterday I went back to the dentist complete with xray. A mum and daughter team were in the waiting room. They spoke really well of the dentist and said that every one comes out smiling which is a great sign. We talked about my xray and the fact that here the patient keeps the xrays, whereas in the UK/US the dentist keeps them and so private investigators end up using records to crack crimes and identify the criminal. The mother daughter team had seen a few murder-mysteries too many mi sa. I carry my xrays in a massive white envelope.

Looking at the xray with Sig Dentista I was rather disappointed to discover that a tooth I had a root canal filling had been removed. I mean, I knew it had been removed, but didn't realise it was the tooth where I'd had the root canal. All those trips to the dentist and me being brave for a root canal doing and then they took the tooth out!

Anyway, I have to go back but not for too much doing, a small filling and he said he’ll inject some antibiotics as there is a small infection. If he doesn’t bring me to tears I’ll consider it a success.

3 April 2008


There's a program on Sky tv called "Cercando Casa Disperatamente" (desperately seeking a house). It's pushed me to do a quick post this evening. Arrgghh. It's kind of an Italian version of "Location Location Location". Main difference is, on the UK version there's a bit of a challenge - ie find the right house in the right location for 150,000 pounds - singles, couples, those wanting to buy to rent etc. On this other version it's almost always a couple, occasionally with children, and the lowest budget I've seen so far has been 600,000 euro. This is what's on now and they're looking for a house in Naples coincidentally.

Now, if you have 600,000 euro, you shouldn't need to call up a tv program to find your self a 2 bedroomed house in Naples. There's lots of these on offer. They might be "da ristruttuare", not all done up like they show on this program, but you'll find them. Other recent episodes have had budgets of 700, 800,000 euro. I don't know where they find these people from considering the masses of people in Italy making 1000 euro a month.

I imagine not many people watch this program who are reading, but I just wanted to mini-rant.