Saturday, February 11, 2012

Slow Week, Snow Week

As snow causes chaos across central-north Italy and the rest of Europe, down here we’ve had rain, mad winds and then more rain. And a bit of sleet.

Which means absolutely nothing has moved this week on the building front. They’ve now fitted the water pump but that’s it. The promise that the rustico would be finished end of February seems rather unlikely, though we’re pretty accustomed to builder’s chat and always translated this as end of March at earliest anyway.

So been trying to get on with a few other things in the meantime.

P.O. Box... 001
Set up our new Casella Postale as country life means no mail at your door. Would've preferred PO Box 007 but looks like we're the only / first ones in Castrignano. So now we can get snail mail again.

Silvano, our hero accountant/residency fixer/agri-turismo business expert went to Lecce Monday to submit my application for Permesso di Soggiorno, which as a foreigner (non European) I need to obtain before requesting residency.

After sending him all document jpgs via email (passport, Italian visa, UK resident permit, marriage certificat, rental agreement, bank statement) I had to go to Lecce in person Wednesday morning, only to be told I have to go back with Jez again next Monday morning. Such is life as a ‘second class citizen’ ie ‘funny passport' holder (you know us trouble-making Canadians). Need the husband to confirm I’m not dodgy. Ain’t THAT ironic.

Seeking Car no2
We’ve been putting serious strain on our poor little Golf by doing the 600km return trip to Bari airport more or less twice a week for the past month. So we’ve been looking for an old banger for me and kids, so Jez can drive the Golf and park it at the airport, avoiding us the long journeys and excessive mileage when he travels.

Problem is, even old bangers aren’t cheap – so far €1,500 for a Fiat Punto over 10 years old, plus €500 title transfer, plus insurance. Seeing our 2003 Golf is worth about that now, seems we can do better.

And of course, I’ve seen my ‘old’ car, the Thing. We used to have one when we lived in Durham North Carolina, another life ago (1974-76). Dad brought it back to Montreal where it struggled a bit at -10ºC and we eventually had to sell it when our house burnt down. It was the coolest car and I always promised myself I would get another Thing one day. Seemed Italy would be a good place for it (they call them Pescaccia here) and now here it is just down the road from us… Unfortunately turns out they’re also quite dear at min €4K but mostly around 8-€10K (on the net) so not quite the right time for it. I’ll still check if they want to sell though, and for how much…

In the meantime, looking online until we visit the used car dealer for a closer look. Of course my practical side goes out the window when I see one of these:

Of course we can't afford these either.
Just makes it a bit difficult to get excited about a Fiat Pinto.

Dog Darnit

We’d been visiting and feeding these four little puppies, saved from some mean git who’d left them to drown in the sea. We so desperately wanted to take all four home with us but couldn’t as we’re still in our rental. They’ve now been adopted by a lady who runs an Agri-Turismo near by. Sorry kids, just wasn’t meant to be… yet.

Treasure Hunt
After spending much time hunting down riffle bullet casings on the land, latest fun is finding as many stranded shoes possible on the beach. 

Really, we need warm weather soon.

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