It is true that, mostly, people are nice. And when people are nice, it lifts you and gives you warm and good feelings inside.
And people are nice if you are nice to them. And it doesn’t take much. Be friendly, be accommodating, be flattering and, above all, be kind. This is nothing to do with religion, after all, that’s not my bag but to do with human nature. Don’t go looking for kindness but, by being kind, it will become apparent in many people around. V often thought (and maybe still thinks) that I am too kind. But given that, in my opinion, I get so much more back by being ‘good’ in my way that, to me, it is worth the odd difficulty.
We have decided that we should get the rest of our furniture from the UK. To ensure that the truck can park I needed to get a permit from the local police. I did this this morning. The guy behind the desk was really helpful and easily tolerated the dismal Italian that I spoke. It costs, of course, but by playing a little bit helpless, the cost was less than I had anticipated. However the queue comprised of 1 – me! And, for Italy, it was quite simple. Only 1 form and the payment. No signatures either and only 1 stamp. Amazing. Then, in order to effect the parking area, I need some special posts that warn drivers that on a particular day they cannot park in that place. Now these can be hired but, since we are in Italy, we just asked as many people as possible. In the end, one of my colleagues spoke to someone here who used to work for a furniture removal company and, I think, we shall be able to get this done free or very cheap.
Plus, some other news which is making me quite excited (I am fairly easily pleased, as you will know). First is that we are definitely going to Mantova for the Festivaletteratura. We shall go on Thursday morning and stay until Sunday night. Amongst the people that will be there is Christopher Hitchens who is always entertaining.
Then, after speaking to S last night, it seems I shall also be going to Segovia although, in this case, it will be so that S and I can do the box office. It should be fun even if we are working. Neither of us can speak Spanish so, I guess, there will be a lot of hand signals, loud talking and writing things down. I hope she brings a lot of paper.
I also learnt that she is a bit of a badminton expert. I only learnt this last night as she is forming a team with PF. This is a bit annoying. Badminton is the only game I can remotely play (albeit very badly). If only I had known we could have played it in the past. Why didn’t she tell me? She is full of hidden talents that I seem to learn one at a time. Grrr.
The furniture will be coming the week after next and we are both quite excited as we remember some of the things that we haven’t seen for almost 4 years. It will be like Christmas. The only concern is that we may have difficulty fitting it all in the flat. However, I’m sure we shall manage.
So, I was talking about being nice. It is true but, I have to admit, for some strange reason, I also have to be a little grumpy. Those of you who knew me in the UK probably think ‘well, he was always very grumpy’, which may be true and, for which, I apologise. Here, in Italy, however, I have, for the most part, not been very grouchy. But it’s a strange thing, with certain people I just can’t help myself. And I’m not actually grumpy most of the time, it’s like a ‘face’ that I have to put on.
I have tried to put this aside and make a conscious effort not to be this way but, for some strange reason, I just slip into my cantankerous face within seconds.
And the more people notice, the more I do it. It’s normally to people who are younger than me. And the more I think about it, I am sure that, had I had kids, I would have been the irascible old dad with both the kids and their friends. But why? It’s not like I actually mean it. It’s more like some sort of game. Maybe I shall give it some more thought and post my conclusions at a later date. And finally, just a quick ‘hello’ to those visitors from Fiat. You know who you are and you are most welcome. This includes S, the eighteen-year-old Australian who currently resides with us and, with whom I am almost full-time grumpy even though his sayings make me laugh. Anyway, he won’t read this as he only comes over to see his sayings and to see if he has any fans yet. Other than J (hi J), I don’t remember who else comes over from there, but you can always leave a comment and then I’ll know who you are.
Anyway shouldn’t you be working or something? Oh, yes, and shouldn’t I ….?