Speaking Italian is difficult but texting Italian on an Italian phone is even more difficult ……. it seems?????

Takers. I hate them. OK, so hate is too strong a word. But I dislike it. I dislike it more when the person is supposed to be a friend.

FfI has just moved into a new house in my area – about 5 minutes from me. She wants me to go and see it – but not that badly, I guess.

Having texted to see if she is free I get the following reply:

2.30 my house. Call & I will give you the address,

She never calls. Always ‘doesn’t have enough credit’. But it’s not free for me either and I get a little pissed with it. So, I’ve decided I won’t call until she does next time. OK, I know it’s petty but it’s every fucking time …… call me I haven’t got any credit!

My reply was:

Text address and I will be there

Cant text in italian.phone sucks. That’s why I need you to call. One second.

WTF? I mean, seriously? You can’t text the address but you can text other messages? Are you off your fucking rocker? I mean, street name, number and bell name or number, that’s all!

Since she uses ‘I haven’t got credit’ all the time, I replied with:

Texts are free for me – calls cost. Send on fb

I got:

Not near computer; cant spell street one with this phone: Will contact you later

Sorry, but it just cannot be true. I don’t believe it and if she can’t be bothered then, frankly, neither can I. She’s a strange one, for sure. It’s gone 2.30 now. I guess I won’t be going until she contacts me …….. which won’t be any time soon LOL

A breakthrough?

We have made some sort of breakthrough.

It’s down to Dino, really, since he looks very cuddly.

Up until last night, the most it has been is a ‘Ciao’ or ‘Salve’ (pronounced salvey = Hi).

The other night she was in the kebab shop, just round the corner from me. She looked excited to see me and the dogs. I was a bit surprised but then an ambulance came by so I was trying to keep Dino from howling, as he does. She asked what was happening and I tried to explain. But then I realised that she wasn’t pleased to see me nor was she (probably) asking what was going on but, rather, was talking to a guy in a white Mercedes cars that are supposed to be, kind of, off-road vehicles but are used for taking the kids to school, etc. I was, frankly, a little embarrassed at having thought she was pleased to see me. After all, why would she be.

However, last night, as I’m walking up to the penultimate corner of our evening walk, she saw us coming and called to Dino. He, of course, was very excited. I told him not to jump. She asked what I was saying and I explained. We chatted for a moment or two, as you do.

I keep wanting to ask her how business is. It’s a bit cheeky but I am interested. She’s tall, with legs. Not amazingly attractive but not ugly. Kind of smartly dressed, in a tarty way. Usually something to show off her legs. Like a shop window shows off the stuff that will entice you in. Which, of course, is what the long legs are for.

And I see cars stop often – inquiring about the price I suppose.

I’ve never seen it so blatant anywhere in the UK.

But, now we’re chatting. So maybe, eventually, I will get chance to find out if business is good. I don’t know why I’m so curious to know – but I am.

As I said, it’s a breakthrough, of sorts.

SHOCK! HORROR! We make the Daily Hate Mail ?????

I was shocked.

I mean, Italy doesn’t make the Daily Hate Mail pages unless it’s for another scandal about Buzz Lightyear or because those “Lazy Italians” are meaning that the UK has to spend a fortune bailing them out as part of the Euro.

So it was nice to see this:

Towers of Trees (officially Vertical Forest)

And I go past them every day. They don’t look like they do in the picture right now but they should do and that is nice.

Although Milan does have a LOT of trees and greenery and a lot of apartment blocks do have roof gardens. It’s nowhere near as drab as you may think :-)

Is this really what we have in store for us? God, I hope not (well, at least for me).

Everyone is different; has a different character and, most definitely, different needs.

I really don’t care if you are married, co-habiting, single (by choice) or anything else (I’m not sure if there IS anything else) – as long as you are happy and as long as (if you have a partner), I don’t want to kill your partner or partners :-)

To be honest, what you do with your life is absolutely none of my business – unless it directly affects my life – in which case it is my business. Of course, if you ask me, I may or may not (depending on whether you’re asking for a confirmation of what you think or really asking me) tell you what I think.

Luckily, for my lovely readers, this blog is about what I think (at this moment that I’m writing, of course – in two hours I could think the opposite although, in this case that’s unlikely).

From Lola’s blog, I read this article entitled “All the Single Ladies”.

The strange thing is that I was quite disturbed by it. I mean, unsettled. Basically it was saying that, given the way that society has changed and the general ratio of men to women, being a single person was now more likely.

Perhaps I was unsettled by the truth of it, for it is not a truth I want for myself.

I understand that some people say they are happier alone. Bar a very few people, I cannot believe it, I’m sorry. True, not every society works in the same way and, for sure, partly why I am happier being ‘with someone’ is that I was brought up to believe in a household where two adults live together (with or without children).

And friends are important. Good friends are irreplaceable, of course. I have many friends. Not thousands but enough for me. Being in a friendship takes work on both sides. And yet, there are friends (like Best Mate and I) who don’t need to be in contact for quite a while and just pick up the friendship where we left off. And I would do almost anything for Best Mate. She is there, even if I am having problems with my partner or even if I don’t have a partner. I love her to bits.


She is not the same as a partner – and I don’t mean for sex. After all, for sex, if I wanted to, there is a tall, leggy prostitute that hangs on the corner of the street and is there when I take the dogs out for a walk. We even say ‘hello’ now. Well, why not? Anyway, as an aside, business seems to be quite good for her. Maybe it’s one of those businesses that thrives in crisis periods?

But I digress. And, anyway, she is a woman so not really interesting to me.

So, if not for sex then what is a partner for? Why is it that I consider it essential for my life and others (including the woman who wrote the article) don’t?

But, then again, the article doesn’t say that a partner is not essential but that, given the fact that she dumped her (probable) partner some time ago, assuming that she would be getting one later and could settle down when she felt like it, and now, finding that a partner is unlikely to be found, she has, in fact, come to a realisation that ‘this is it’ and that she had better get on and enjoy what she has.

And I think that is my point.

My greatest fear is to be old and alone. Since I don’t have (and won’t have) any children, unless I have a partner, I shall be alone when I am old.

But it’s not even that, really.

After V, I thought that, given my age, I would remain alone. For those of you that have been readers for over three years, you will know this.

But I found, after a few months of being alone, that ‘being alone’ was not an acceptable life for me. I NEEDED a partner to share things with, to cuddle up with at night and, mostly, to not feel ALONE. ALONE I cannot handle. And, as you may know, I thought that I cannot be the only person in Milan who thinks this way and so I went out to find the other person who felt the same (or, more or less, the same).

And I think that’s the problem with this woman. She hasn’t come to terms with what her single life is and doesn’t want to commit. And, by not committing was thinking that when the right man happened along, they would both know and everything would be fine.

However, as I said before I started the online dating search, it’s no good waiting for Mr Right to come knocking at my door if I am stuck there night after night. No, I needed to go out and FIND him.

And I think that, in spite of her positiveness, she is, in fact, ALONE and, possibly too busy to feel LONELY – but she may well feel lonely later and that she is fully well aware of that.

Friends, of course, will be important to her but there are those times when (even when you’re with friends) you feel alone. With a partner, I don’t get this feeling. With F, I don’t feel alone anymore.

Anyway, sorry for the ramble. They are, after all, just my opinions and thoughts.

An end to the world crisis?

If you’re working for a company, for example, and you feel something is wrong (or something is wrong), going on strike, on your own, doesn’t actually work very well. In fact, you are likely to be sacked.

That’s why Unions were born. With Unions, all the people go on strike, meaning that it is not good for the owners of the company. Therefore, the idea being that the owners of the company and the Union come to some sort of agreement.

But it doesn’t seem to work in all circumstances and there are risks, of course.

But I was just wondering, if we think of a country as an individual and think of the owners of the company as the banks (and, therefore, the money markets) ……….

What would happen if all the countries got together and said that they had all decided not to pay the debts – i.e. they went on strike?

I mean to say, if one country does it, they have a rough time for a number of years. But if every country did it, all at the same time?

Doesn’t bear thinking about, right?

Or, maybe it should bear thinking about?

Hot topic :-(

In every conversation that I’m having with F now, the subject arises.

How many? What type? Where?

I remember when it used to happen before but you knew that was ending just as soon as the little barsteward learnt NOT to do it inside.

I am, of course, talking about shit. To be more precise, dog shit.

Now it is the same but different. Given Rufus’ situation, every time I am looking for solid or, at least, semi-solid. Definitely not runny. And, ‘where’ and ‘how many’ becomes – one in the house; two in the house; two outside or whatever.

You get my drift.

I really have to stop talking about it every time we talk :-(


I am a little bit worried, to be honest.

He is old now. He has lots of bumps and lumps. Unfortunately, Dino will keep licking them until they bleed – and so he is full of sticking plaster and bandages.

The problem with sticking plaster and bandages is that the lumps don’t get time to dry out and heal properly.

One, in particular, is causing me some worry. It’s just behind his ear. Last summer, Dino licked it so badly that we had to take Rufus to a vet who cut it out. The lump was checked and was not malignant.

But, within 6 months, it was back. And Dino licked again. However, then it kind of ‘burst’. The smell of the excreted puss was gaggingly awful. But, once cleaned up, it (and Rufus) seemed much better.

Except it came back again.

And Dino licked again.

And so Rufus has a bandage round his neck again.

And for the last few days, the smell is back. And I’ve tried to clean it up, but it keeps excreting ‘stuff’ and so, smelling a lot. So I have to have another go at it tonight.

Unfortunately, he also is suffering from diarrhoea …….again. He was on Dia Tabs for 4 days and now on some oral medicine but it only seems to be working a bit.

And, last night, I thought that, maybe, I should take him back to the vet later this week.

And then I thought that perhaps the vet would say that there was really nothing they could do. And then I thought that it is difficult to say whether his quality of life now is really all it’s cracked up to be. And then I worried that, if I took him to the vets and the vet said that there was nothing he could do, the vet would add that he should be put down now.

And that made me feel really bad.

And, so, I have decided that on Thursday or Friday, I will take him to the vets and, at the very least, ask him for penicillin which may cure the weeping, smelly lump and for certain WILL cure, if only for a limited time, the diarrhoea problem.

And, then, maybe we can keep him for a bit longer.

Do the work and wait ……… wait ……… for the money

I read this, from the Independant (which I got from Twitter or Facebook or something – I’m sorry, I forget now).

Interns, from what I can understand can expect no payment for any work they do. It is supposed to be treated as ‘work experience’. The problem here is that it rarely leads to a full-time job. Instead, Interns go from one ‘unpaid job’ to another.

It will surely become a problem given the current crisis. With no hope of securing a full-time job – why bother?

Which then leads to unhappiness. Which, in turn leads to restlessness. And then, when there are enough unhappy, restless young people, something is bound to happen, isn’t it?

However, the really damning bit (for me) comes towards the end of the piece, namely:

But it seems that even people hired by the magazine cannot count on being paid. The Independent spoke to one person who was recruited this summer by Flash Art magazine without pay on a two-month trial basis. After a successful trial he continued working but was told there was no money to pay him a month later.

“Of course it’s immoral,” he said. “If they haven’t got the money to pay the staff they need, then they shouldn’t be in operation. But it’s hardly the only company doing this sort of thing.”

The Flash Art controversy followed the magazine’s recent call for new interns for eight to 10-month periods – even though using someone as an intern for more than six months is illegal in Italy.

I have known of other people who haven’t been paid – either for a very long time or at all. Worse still, if you’re on some sort of term contract. I cross my fingers that I didn’t have too much problem getting my money when I was teaching (although there was one, how should I say, ‘near miss’).

Part of the reason it’s like this is the Italian way of thinking. Mummy and Daddy can always take care of you, it seems. And, because Italians have the highest savings rate in Europe (maybe the world?), it is (I guess) assumed you have plenty of savings to tide you over.

I’m sure I would have a much stronger opinion about it if it had ever happened to me but it is wrong, isn’t it? I mean, in a civilised country within the European Union, how can this possibly be right?

It’s a sign of a wider problem. That of not really giving a shit about anyone else [that’s not either family or important to you].

And things that I do, as a Brit, sometimes get misconstrued by Italians. I remember somebody who got a ‘job’ through someone else. They thought it would be a really nice idea to take their new boss to lunch – if the guy were in the area. But the friend who had done the recommendation became something akin to a Tasmanian Devil and the vitriol and hatred that spat from a (normally) very nice, pleasant, Italian woman was more than a little shocking. For her it was this person ‘going behind her back’.

She now lives in the UK. I wonder how she gets on over there – where, to be honest, this kind of situation is not something to be bothered about.

We don’t all have some ulterior motive other than ‘to be nice and respectful’. Here that does not always seem to be the case. Not giving a shit about people seems to be the norm – and it does annoy me a bit.