13 November 2007
time for reflection

Ah the joys of living in small town southern Italy.

I called Telecom Italia again last night and now before they’ll even connect me with a real person, there’s a recording to remind me that they told me it’d be fixed by “next” Wednesday. (I’m just going to keep believing that they really mean the Wednesday that’s coming tomorrow.)

Um, no they didn’t tell me that, but it was somewhat comforting to know that they’re at least on the case. So I went to talk to one of only four other people in the village who have ADSL to see what he knew.

While I was in there, another of the Lucky Five came in and here’s a paraphrased snippet of the conversation between the two Italians:

Disgruntled Customer #1: So it’s been out for a few days now.

Disgruntled Customer #2: Yes, they’re working on the cables.

#1: I saw that, but I worked on a ship for 30 years. When fixing cables, they put in the new ones *then* take out the old so there’s no interruption of service.

#2: Yes…but we’re in Italy.

And that about sums it up kiddos.

On the bright side, they say that this will give us increased speed once the cables are in--nice since we’re still nowhere near even the speed we were promised when we signed up (we run at about a third of that on a good day).

But on the not-so-bright side, I probably won’t be able to keep up this routine of running to the internet café (yes, it's a real one with coffee and everything!) every day (a three and a half hour journey because of the bus schedule), so I don’t know where that’ll leave us NaBloPoMo-wise.

Plus, did I mention the computers at the café move ridiculously slowly? I’ve had trouble even viewing my blog, so please excuse any weird-looking things going on. And I hope it’s just that those computers are set for strange color tones or something because my blog is so not supposed to be nearly-iridescent yellow on the sides. Ew.

30 days of thanks

Today I’m thankful for:

The fact that I can even have these stresses in my life. Sometimes it takes frustrations like this for me to realize just how lucky I am to wake up healthy with a roof over my head, food in the fridge, and loved ones similarly lucky all over the world. I even have two dogs and six puppies to cheer me up when need be.

Sometimes a little down time is needed to really stop and appreciate the basics.

A little time for reflection if you will:

reflection, calabria, southern italy

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Blogger sognatrice said...

Please excuse my lack of responding to comments in these few days. I have been reading them through email, and I certainly appreciate them! Hopefully we'll be back to normal around here soon....

Anonymous Sara said...

I sincerely hope that a bad internet connection is the absolutely worst thing that ever happens to you -- and for no more critical reason than that it makes it difficult for you to play NaBloPoMo.

Good for you for already having it in perspective, as annoying and inconvenient as it obviously is. :)

Very frustrating for you I'm sure... hang in there. At least there's a cafè you can use as back-up. I have to say, I have heard WAAAAAAAAY too many times the refrain "Ma quest'è l'Italia." Or, "Solo in Italia." And you can't really do much about it, can you? In my first office job here, it was a new office, and we had to wait nearly 3 months to get our Internet connection set up. Imagine, VATICAN Telecom! A real adventure, but hey, maybe our connection was blessed by the Pope or something.
Anyways, the reflection is great, because it is so important to remember how lucky we are despite the daily frustrations.

Anonymous My Melange said...

Oh, Sognatrice....3 hours each way! You have many more patience than I do. I think if I ever move to Italy...I'll have to move North ;) Chin up!

Blogger sognatrice said...

OK well I'm typing this from home, so let's hope we're good for a while. As I was arriving back in the village, a Telecom truck was behind us--I waited about a half hour and the internet has been good since then. Fingers crossed!

Sara, thanks, me too (hoping that it's the worst that ever happens to me). It's so easy to get bogged down in little frustrations, so I'm glad I have my "thankful" days to get me back on track.

Shelley, what I loved most about that conversation was that it was two Italians--one saying "Ma siamo in Italia" and the other saying "E allora?" Good to know there are at least some Italians who get as frustrated as I do ;)

Robin, oops--3 1/2 hours TOTAL. Goodness, three hours one way would have definitely meant my bowing out of NaBlo as of yesterday ;) Anyway, at least in that town there's lots to do, so I've caught up on random shopping and whatnot (certain things we can't get here). I had to go there anyway sooner or later anyway, so it was actually good to give me a push.

Blogger Anthony and Lisa said...

Your blog still is incredible - no weird color changes that I can see! Good luck with the connection and hopefully it's up and running sooner than later.

I would LOVE to have that view everyday!

Blogger Tui said...

Oh gosh... We had a 2 month internet hiatus here, and the 'cafe' also had a slow connection! Things finally got fixed, and we're literally up to speed. Phew!

No worries, your site is not iridescent yellow!

Here's hoping that all will be up and running soon. :)

Blogger Roam2Rome said...

Now that's a faithful NaBloPoMo blogger! I was disappointed to see how many NaBloPoMo bloggers already missed posts! Yet here you are... it speaks volumes of our dear Sognatrice :)

Hang in there, I'll share my internet connection with you, if you want!

Blogger sognatrice said...

A & L, thanks for the good wishes; I'm happy to share the view :)

Tui, I've actually only had the internet in my house for 2 1/2 of my 4 years here, but once you get it, it's so hard to live without it, isn't it? Looks like things are OK right now, but it's all about cautious optimism ;)

Roam, well I'm a stubborn blogger at least ;)

Blogger Geggie said...

Now, that's committment! Three and a half hours? Wow!

Glad to see you are up and running again. That view? Sigh!

Blogger Karina said...

Your reflection is very true. We get bogged down in the day to day things all too often, and sometimes take for granted all the blessings. It's important to reflect once in a while, put things in prespective.

Glad it seems you may be up and running again! Here's to it lasting!

Blogger cheeky said...

Hey, I do hope they don't keep you away from us for too long. We will all have withdrawals.
It's nice to see that these little inconveniences sometimes give us a gentle push to see what we really have to be thankful for.
Sending love to Luna, Stella and all the wee puppies. Mwwaaahhh....

Blogger sognatrice said...

*Geggie, well only an hour and fifteen minutes or so of that is travel time--the rest is internet and shopping/window shopping time :)

*NYC, it's funny that I really never noticed that reflection in my balcony door ever before--luckily I was standing there with a camera.

*Karina, my fingers are firmly crossed as well :)

*Cheeky, your love is much appreciated!

Blogger Taffiny said...

don't worry your blog is pretty :) (no ew ever)

Oh wow that is a trek. Wish there was a way to do them several in a row, differently date them, and then hit publish, and then have them appear when they are supposed to.
You have been doing an impressive job at multi-tasking, but, geez louise, I think this is well above and beyond, certainly a valid reason for not doing all of the nablopomo days.
I hope your connection gets fixed soon!

I just had the same thankful chat with myself yesterday, carrying on I was, and then thoght, "geez, these are my problems, this is what I have to carry-on about? How lucky am I!"

Isn't it funny how time moves at various speeds in different places; think of a New York Minute... or 'soon' in Italy... it's like that everywhere, each place goes at it's own individual pace, whether that is lightening fast or as slow as molasses in January.

Time to reflect should be slow though, I think... just for perspective.

Big hugs,
Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Blogger Gil said...

I hope that they fixed it for good this time. If not, you'll go gray if you go back to using dial up!! It is a pleasure to read your writing as you have such a beautiful outlook on life.

Blogger african vanielje said...

Sognatrice in Africa we all just give an almost imperceptible shrug or raise one eyebrow infintisemally and murmer DIA. Dis is Africa. Is this the ultimate in trendy apathy or is it just truly-advanced-soul acceptance of the things we cannot change ? Rhetorical questions, I know you are struggling to reply.

Blogger Geggie said...

And window shopping may be the most important part.

Blogger Shameless said...

Good to have time for reflection ... even if it's forced on is! Good luck with the cables! :-)

Blogger Jeni said...

Very true! Even when things are really black and no light seems to be coming through, there's always something. somewhere for which we can be thankful! Great post.

Blogger Scribbit said...

It's just hard to believe that there's anything wrong with such a beautiful place. I just can't see any downsides :)

Blogger sognatrice said...

*Taffiny, the realization that my problems are so small in the grand scheme of things honestly helps to keep me going--doesn't mean I don't have "poor me" moments, but we're all entitled to some of those every once in a while. So long as we snap out of them ;)

*Scarlett, it's interesting having lived in different places, getting used to that "local" time. Always takes a while to adjust, but sooner or later we catch on. Or move!

*Gil, would you believe our ADSL really isn't *that* much faster than dial up was? Crazy I know, but yes, I do enjoy having the ability to at least sometimes see videos.

*AV, I go back and forth on what I think about this. On one hand, how can things get better if we just sit still and do nothing; on the other hand, how much of this stuff really is in our control anyway and how much would we simply be banging our heads against walls to try and change it? I don't know the answers, but I also know that I wasn't raised Italian, so I have a lot of different perceptions than many Italians--and it would seem that if Italians don't want things to change for whatever reason they won't. I don't think those of us who have moved here later in life can do all that much.

*Geggie, I love window shopping, more here than I ever did. This could be, of course, because when I enter a store, the clerks won't leave me alone wanting to help me find something, anything, what size do you need, etc ;)

*Shameless, thanks, although now I'm not sure all this was about cables anyway; they were up here yesterday adjusting something and now things work fine, so I think the cables will probably still cause problems someday....

*Jeni, thanks. I think it's good to remember that we're quite fortunate despite annoyances.

*Scribbit, truth be told these small frustrations don't outweigh all the positives for me either :)

It is the simple things that make life so sweet, isn't it?

Blogger Jen of A2eatwrite said...

lovely photos! And good luck with your connection...

Blogger sognatrice said...

*Jeni, indeed :)

*Jen, thanks; it's working now, so it's just a question of for how long....

Blogger Leanne said...

Italian Telecom! What a nightmare... Actually a lot of phone based customer service is just so bad. A few months ago it was a hot, scorching summers night in Sicily and we saw a small fire near our apartments. My friend and I called the Fire Brigade and were put into a que....and then hung up on so never got to report that fire in the end....

Blogger sognatrice said...

Leanne, OK not being able to report a fire is a *bad* thing. Unbelievable!

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