Monday, July 16, 2007

Buying a car and other headaches!

We had a wonderful weekend, mostly because Fernando did not have to work, and we had time to enjoy each other and our new surroundings. I haven't mentioned that since his arrival, Fernando has been working non-stop, trying to fix a major problem with a client in Milan. They finally found a solution for the problem, and everybody is happy. My husband is an Electronical Engineer working with industrial control software at a company called Wonderware -not Wonderbra, not Wonder bread- their mascot is a cow, and every employee is a little nuts; this is all I know about his work (well, not really, but who wants to know more about it?)

On Saturday we went to a nearby town to meet with a fellow expat; she is moving to the US and she is selling her car and all her appliances, and we need a car and appliances!!!! Linda and her husband are originally from South Africa and they are wonderful people. We went to drive a Peugeot 206 (four doors, with low millage), and hopefully to buy it. You have to understand that this is an ideal situation: the car fits my needs, the people selling it speak English, they will take a payment in the US, and best of all, they want to help us. All was good, we drove, we talked and then they asked us if we had the permesso de soggiorno yet. Well the permesso is basically a permit to stay, and you apply for it as soon as you arrive in Italy. In Fernando's case he had to show his nulla osta (the original permit to work in Italy, the little piece of paper for which we waited almost a year) to get the permesso. Now he has sent his application to Rome, and all we have is the mail receipt. Just to simplify this a little for you, NO, WE DON'T HAVE A PERMESSO DE SOGGIORNO YET!

In Italy you need to be a resident to buy a car, so it goes a little bit like this: to be a resident you have to have a signed lease to take to the commune; the commune then sends a police officer to your address to check if you really live there. He doesn't make an appointment, he just shows up, and if you are not there he might come back. If all goes well he reports back to the commune and then, they issue you a resident permit. But wait, it is not so easy! Foreigners need to have the PERMESSO to apply for residency.

How long does the permesso take? Well, we don't know! The lawyers say it can be a couple of weeks, or it can be longer....

Where does this leave us? Well... it seems we won't be able to buy Linda's car, and we will have to wait a while before we can buy anything at all.

Our rental car is due back in a week, and we are still trying to figure out a way to get another car. Fernando's company is providing him with a leased car, but they have to wait for the one we want. I guess they might be able to find us a rental while the other one comes.

I am leaving for Spain this afternoon, and all worries are going to stay at the hotel, in a little box under the bed. I am going to have a blast with our friends, and I am really happy to see Nicolas again, I have missed him so much!

Ciao for now!

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