Friday, January 28, 2011

La Posta

Today arrived a package that was sent from California on Dec 4th.  Today is January 28th.  This package has been here in Italy since before Christmas according to the tracking but for whatever reason, assuming there is one it only just arrived today.  The box was stuffed full of wonderful Christmas presents from my good friend Renee.  She had so badly wanted it to get here for Christmas, but alas this is Italy and it just wasn't to be.

I remember reading somewhere, that the mail system in Italy is so bad that when they get too much of it they just burn piles of it.  I doubt that it is true, but nonetheless should I someday come across a pile of burning mail I will not be shocked.

Italy is a beautiful country with wonderful food and great history and fantastic art.  It is not however a very how shall I put it, efficient county.  From what I have seen this is generally accepted and thus continues.  My package for example:

Sent Dec 4th
Made it though customs Dec 13th
And ever since then they promise they have tired to deliver it almost every day according to the online tracking on the US side.
However there was no one knocking on my door or leaving me package slips until last week.
When the guy finally did make it to my door the first time it was while I was home sick with the flu, otherwise I would have been at school. He came and wanted 60 Euros for the package.  When I told him I did not have 60 Euros on me he said, "Non posso lasciare il pacchetto senza pagamento." roughly well then you cannot have the gift.
I told him I would be here the following Monday in the afternoon with the money, he promised to return then with my gift.
I waited all afternoon Monday for his return.
Tuesday I was out of town, Wednesday when I got home from school there was a sticky note message from the post office saying to call about my package.  I took the note with me to school the next day and my teacher kindly called for me, as I do not have all the vocab necessary for this conversation.  Whomever she talked to told her to call a different number, we did and finally were informed that my package was already returning to the States.
That was yesterday.  Today the guy shows up again wanting 60 Euros which I would have had on me if they had not told me it was already heading back across the Atlantic.   Again he said, "Non posso lasciare il pacchetto senza pagamento." To which I replied after studying Italian all day long, "Mi hanno detto che stava tornando negli Stati Uniti quindi non hanno i soldi e non ho mai sono qui quando si arriva. Vorrei che il mio pacchetto, quindi sto per andare in banca, e si può portare il pacco in 20 min. Va bene?!" Basically, listen buddy enough is enough, I want the package, I will run to the ATM and get the money and you can come back in 20 min.

And 54 days and 20 min after Renee sent me the package I actually got it, opened it and loved it.

Just a little picture of trying to get things done in Italy. 


Anne said...

Care packages are the best even when they arrive late!! Something we have learned the hard way... encourage the sender to declare the package to have little/no value on the customs form when they send it! That way you will pay little or possibly nothing when you receive it! It works... anything to stretch those missionary dollars, right?

Brittany said...

So that postcard that I was going to send from Mississippi and that is still flying around the seat of my car...I could send it and it would still be late and you might not see it anyway, huh? Might have to try an experiment. :)

Linda : ) said...

I'm glad you FINALLY got it. I know Renee will be relieved. But how frustrating! It really makes me not want to send you anything, which is too bad because I'm sure you wouldn't mind getting a little something every now and then.

trinity said...

Yes you can send things, small packages in the envelope packing arrive faster it seems. Postcards and mail are arriving just fine except for an envelope with money I have yet to see. And like Ann said if you mark it as having little or no value I should not have to pay customs on it.