19 January 2012

this morning

(or "When water is thicker than blood")

Once again I have evidence of why I love Italy so much.

Recently I met two elderly Americans who had wished to live here, but did not have the required documentation or accommodation. I was called (informally) to help sort out their problems and explain the intricacies of their unfortunate position to them.

They didn't have a phone, nor did I give them my number.

It transpired that unless they found appropriate accommodation and care (which they were refusing to do), and applied to be legal immigrants with appropriate documentation, they needed to leave. Yesterday they were taken to Rome by taxi.

This morning, most unexpectedly, I received a phone call from Natalia at the Hilton Hotel near Fiumicino airport. They had in their care two 86 year old Americans who had arrived the night before, en route to the airport, and didn't know where they were supposed to be going, or when. Was I the artist from Roccasecca who had called a lawyer on their behalf, and did I know what was happening as the hotel would not leave these two confused people on their own at the airport. (The Americans would not have had my name).

How efficient and caring is that? Somehow, and I suspect very quickly, they had located me. When Italy does things well, it REALLY does them well. It is a country where family and heart are more important to people than la bella figura that they often hide behind.

In times of bad publicity over the terrible tragedy off the Tuscan coast little acts of mercy towards complete strangers are taking place unsung.

Today I am grateful for the carabinieri.

1 comment:

Nicola said...

Wow. Wowsers.