Wednesday, November 08, 2006

November 2006

Sambuco newsblog November 2006

If she finds out I’m dead in the water. Or maybe I should say when she find out, and not if.
It was a hijacking, a highway robbery.
And I was the victim.

What would she say?
She would say, Michael, how could you?
You, who have traveled the world and been swindled and cheated from New Dehli to Mexico City…how could you be so dumb?
And I would reply (you can bet I’m getting my replies practiced and ready)…. I would say something like…
Hey, come on! The road between Amandola and Sarnano? It didn’t enter my head!
You’re gullible that’s what she’ll say, gullible gullible gullible. Un ingenu, una pecora persa

You want to hear the story, don’t you?
I’ve got to start it by explaining that I’m the most non-racial person on this planet.
Why, when I first went to South Africa in the time of apartheid, and when I went through customs at Durban, I handed out sweets to to the African workers cleaning the floor with toothbrushes. Consequence?
Two hours in luggage inspection but spared from execution.

So here we are, the story.
I was driving back from Sarnano and to the side of the main road was a car with its bonnet up and what I took for an Indian family outside around it and the father trying to flag down passing cars...and nobody was stopping. Oh, poor souls I think and turn my car around and go back.
First mistake!
As I get out of car, the man grabs my hand and thrusts it to his heart and says Oh kind kind sir, today you have truly saved out souls and found a place for yourself in paradise (Help!). I am an Arab sir (Oh no!) and I live in France and am a respectable business man (Hmm!).
I say OK calm down. Are you out of petrol and can I drive you to the garage? Oh no gentle sir, he says, its that nobody will take my credit card and I need petrol money for the big drive to France.
He takes me to his car and says look look kindest man ever, there's the baby of my daughter in the back and you are saving her too by giving me E150.
Me, giving you a hundred and fifity Euros? Yes yes he says and yes yes says his wife who comes running over and starts wailing.
Look I say there's no way I can give you E150.
Yes you can he says and starts taking off bracelets, a ring a necklace. All gold he says. (Oh yeah?) A thousand Euros worth as a securuty.
Look, I don't want your gold I say and he starts throwing it on my dashbord.

OK.. to cut a long story short, I drive off a hundred Euros lighter and just know I've been done.
I hide the gold in my camera bag.
Then a few days back I check with our jeweller friend in town.
He takes one quick look through his eyeglass and chuckles.
Michael, all that glisters is not gold, he says.
Bottle it, I say.

It's wearing off now but I've felt bad about it for a week.
Robbed I was.

The weather.
On the third of November , in the evening, we had our first snow of the winter.
A shock, because there has been no build up. We’ve had an extended summer with temps last week hitting 28C. Sore throats, coughs ands sneezes, and that’s the cats. But now, a few days later the sunshine is back and we have temps up to 20C again.
Dry it is and the grass sown by Pino shows no sign of taking.
And when the cars drive past it's as dusty as summer.

Feeling pretty aggresive after the highway robbery, I find myself in the post Office with 250 invitaions to post for an exhibtion Lorenzo and I have in Ancona. I have a hundred things to do and am late for an appointement.
Do they have a franking machine for a bulk stamping?
But Michael the Post lady says, just leave them with me and i'll put the stamps on for you!
I stare intently at her. You will? You'd do that?
Yes, sure she says, pop back later, no prob.
And I walk out feeling better about the world.
I've been given something.. simple kindness.

Everyone's getting it. It's great. I can talk with my grandchildren in South Africa via video in real time. Who's that mummy?, my grandaughter says, as my face pops up on her screen.
Time to visit them.. I can't have them not recognining their own grandad. Shameful

Tai chi
Lili and I went on a Tai Chi weekend in Reggia Emilia. Taiost it was, full immersion for twelve hours. Got the shoes but need to buy the outfit for the next session in November.
Another trip to Decathlon.