Not Allowed

There’s a new sign been put up in our local bank. Is it not advertising a new interest rate or even mortgage services?

No. It’s a list of all the things you are not allowed to take into the banking hall.

In Italy before you can go into the bank you have to step into a Tardis type ante-chamber, where undecipherable electronic words are barked at you as I imagine you are scanned to see if you’re concealing anything about your person. Once satisfied the door opens and you can enter. As only one person at a time is allowed in the Tardis and it means the flow of visitors is controlled by the staff at the counters. We did once cause much consternation at our bank, when two of us went into the scanning chamber at the same time.

This new sign is in a prominent position beside the Tardis and it tells the passing observer that they can enter the bank carrying keys. However there is list of banned items that are not permitted to be taken inside. These prohibited items are cameras, briefcases, umbrellas and guns.

Now I’m not one who casually walks about town wielding a firearm, but surely it stands to reason that guns wouldn’t be allowed and anyone walking into a bank carrying one would instantly be assumed to be about to commit a felony.

In Pescara last weekend I saw another sign, this was in a shop window and consisted of two lines of text that made me smile:


The sign reads, Opening hours, every day. Except it was closed with the shutters pulled down on the day I walked past, so the shop is obviously not open every day.

Orange Moons and Rainbows

There are times when I wish I had a better camera. Before I came to Italy I always had my camera with me, I used it for work, as it’s sometimes quicker to take a photo than write notes about what you see. Here in Italy, there’s always new surprises around each corner, so in theory I should have a camera with me constantly. I can’t tell you how many events I’ve been to, dinner parties I’ve attended and fiestas that would have benefitted from being recorded. Recently, we had a beautiful orange moon and I went inside to get my little Kodak, I got from E Bay a few years back. I tried to get a decent shot but sadly this was the best I could do.


The problem with getting a new camera is it’s an expense I need not have. Very rarely do any of the magazines I write for ask me for photos, so I can’t really justify it as a genuine business expense. I could buy a new camera for my own photo collection. I could use it for images for my blogs, but they’re really only just snaps: This hasn’t stopped some of them turning up on other people’s blogs, hence the copyright notice. While we are on the subject of copyright, I received a mail from someone anonymous who said they thought my copyright disclaimer on this blog was a bit harsh. I hardly think so, let me know if you think it is. The same notice is on my other blog, and no one has commented about it there.

This evening after the rain a rainbow appeared over the rabbit farm. I took another picture again wishing my camera could do justice to the view before me. I do like the sunshine here in Italy, but sometimes days of endless hot weather mean the view remains unchanged. Tonight there’s a low cloud blocking the view of the town of Archi, the mountain is swaddled in mist and although you can’t see it the air is full of that indescribable smell you get after rain. (How would you describe the smell?)100_7211c

Who knows what the view will be like tomorrow, maybe completely obliterated by fog, or impenetrable by heavy rain, possibly lit by a high bright sun. Either way better camera or not, it’s still my view and I’ll savour it at every opportunity.