Saturday, January 28, 2012

What if God was one of us?

sorry this one is late... THIS HAPPENED IN JANUARY/FEBRUARY.... just forgot to publish

 The song "what if God was one of us" by Joan Osborne makes me take a good look at my life. I ride the bus a lot, now that Firenze is beyond the cold of what Utah could ever be (don't think that is possible... trust me it's humid snowy and chills to the bone and I don't have all my Utah coats). When I'm on the bus I look around and I hardly see a smiling face, it is quite depressing. Today was a day that I will never forget:

I woke up at 5:00 this morning to go to the Questura (aka police station that looks like the DMV) So last time I went there (to get half of my permit of stay) they opened at 6:00 in the morning.... so I figured I'd go early so I could get it done and then go take an Italian test on possessive past verbs (I still don't understand) and then go home and sleep after a VERY late night of study. So I woke up put on a pare of 200 thread count tights (pretty much really thick leggings) two- what I thought were warm- shirts and my coat, the hat my mom made me and a pare of leather boots and red leather gloves and went to wait for the bus.

It was quiet and I watched the traffic lights change as little flecks of snow started to drift towards the ground. It was the most empty I had ever seen Florence. A few minutes later the magazine stand opened and trains started to pass in the distance and soon my bus arrived. Two other people sat on the bus with me. I quickly got off the bus looked at my watch and rushed to the police station. 15 past and a line had already started. I got in line and started to wait... and then wait and then wait. I looked at my watch and found that only ten minutes had passed. The snow was starting to get heavy and was leaving flecks of white in my hair, but it was hard to examine the beauty of each snowflake when the feeling in my hands and feet were starting to turn into a painful numbing sensation. It was so cold and so painful and all I could think about was the fact that the building would open any second. I would think to myself just one more minute and when that one minute passed I would start all over again. I finally turned to the lady in front of me and asked when it opened, she said "alle otto mezzo." at eight thirty?!?!? No way! I thought to myself. I looked at my watch it was 7:30... 20 minutes of trying everything in my power to not just walk away and find a warm place, suddenly the line started to move. When I presented my passport and tried to explain to the officer that I had not received a SMS (text message) from them, he started yelling at me, because I didn't have a SMS. I tried my best to explain that I didn't have it but he wasn't listening so he decided to try and yell louder at me. I just looked at him and let him yell all he wanted. When he had finished I held up the paper print out of the computer screen that had said my Permit of Stay was ready to be picked up and then I pointed to the word SMS and said, "non c'è." He indignantly told me to wait and snatched my passport out of my hands and went into the back. I couldn't help but just burst into tears. My hands and feet ached from being frozen, I was coughing and couldn't breath because I was trying to fight one heck of a nasty cold and now I was being told to go home after waiting almost two hours in the snow and loosing precious sleep!?!? no, not cool. I had a good cry for a minute then wiped my tears and waited with a furious determination, if he didn't let me in I would punch him (not really but it made the situation seem lighter). When he came back out he apologized and looked very remorseful. He said that the Questura had forgotten to send me the text... great. and then he told me to come back at 12.

I left feeling better because I left the mean man feeling bad for yelling at me, but he should have felt bad! He was rude! I could barely walk I was so cold and my feet hurt so bad but I managed to make it to the first cafe I saw on my way to school. I slipped in ordered a hot chocolate sat down and studied for Italian. I left for school after I finished my hot chocolate. The bus ride was normal and after that morning I felt like I could endure just about anything. I walked up the giant (and i mean giant... 5 minutes of working my calf's to death) hill that leads to school and asked my teacher if I could take the test early so I could get to the police station and get my PDS. She agreed and told me I could start the test at 10 so that I could finish while my class was coming in. I sat on the heater at school and studied for a little bit until 10. Then doom.... I've had a habit of not getting the greatest grades in my Italian class (for the reason that the class right after Italian, the teacher had told me she was going to give me a C- and I'd have to really prove to her I wanted a B... I had to put all my time and effort into that class so the rest of my classes seemed to take a hit) I was nervous but much more confident that I was going to get a better grade than I had for the whole previous semester. I finished in no time and then ran back to the Questura, I got there at 11:30 and got in line... you are not going to believe this... They told me to come back at one. I was not going to go all the way back to the villa (one of the campus's for school) so I sat and read. At 1:00 on the dot I was back in line, got my number and then sat down to wait.

I realized something funny as I sat there. On the board they were asking for letters A, B, and C. I looked down at my ticket and saw: F15. "YOU'VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!!" I screamed in my head. I looked at the board again, letter A had just passed the 200's and B was in the 30's and C had just started. I went up to a police officer and asked what time they would start calling F, he said at 2:30. Oh okay.... I only have to wait an hour and a half. So I sat back down and started to talk to a woman by the name of Joy. She was from Nigeria and had been in Italy for 12 years working as a nanny and a cook. A man from Morocco over heard us and joined in. He heard my story of what had happened that morning and couldn't believe his ears the woman had been there the same amount of time I had and her number was A221. At 2 all the windows closed for a break. They didn't open again until 2:45 oh and guess what they didn't start calling F or A until 3:30. During that time we eventually got on the subject of religion, The man was Islamic and worshiped Allah but we agreed on one subject... we worship the same God. We Worship in different ways with different names but he is the God of Abraham and Isaac.

I eventually got my PDS around 4:30  that day. But I got something more out of that day as well... I learned that God will send angels to make your day better... Joy and the Islamic man were my angels... they taught me that we sometimes just have to put up with crap in order for better things to happen... I felt like I was going to freeze to death, fail a test and never get my PDS.... but I got through the day without any missing parts, got the 3rd highest score in the class and was a legal resident of Italy.... I also realized what I would ask God if I met him on the street.... and it wouldn't be a Question.

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