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Lesson Plans

Re: Italy (Travel tip)

From: thammond
Date: Thu May 18 2000 - 08:21:13 PDT

  • Next message: Sea Pearly: "Re: AP Studio Art"

    We've travelled to Italy frequently and I thought I'd throw out another
    security tip...this ploy has been used on me and my husband three different
    times, but we've been lucky and didn't lose anything. The thief will spill
    something on you, or on your shoes to distract you and while you're busy
    cleaning it up, somebody is picking your pocket or robbing your purse. In
    one of our cases, it happened in a restaurant (in Milan) and while I was
    bent over mopping the ketchup off of my feet, the guy grabbed my bag off
    the table and made a run for it. Fortunately, another patron in the
    restaurant saw what had happened and grabbed my bag from the thief as he
    ran by, and returned it to me. The bad guy got away however. :--(
    Note: This bag did not have my passport or cash or credit card in it (which
    were in the slim pack worn under my shirt), but it did have my camera,
    traveller's checks, and guide book.

    We were robbed once in Florence and it was one of the worst days of my
    life. My husband is an artist and he had a sabbatical from teaching for a
    year. We rented a house near Siena for 6 weeks and he was producing
    fabulous paintings. Near the end of our time there, we drove to Ferrara to
    meet an art dealer to show him the paintings. He loved them and there was
    talk of an exhibit, etc. On the way back to Siena, we decided to stop in
    Florence to see the recently restored Brancacci Chapel. We parked our
    little rental car in front of the carabinieri (kind-of like our police)
    station and covered all our stuff in the back. When we returned an hour
    later, we found that someone had pried the passenger side door open and
    stolen our luggage, and all of Roy's portfolios and sketchbooks. I still
    want to cry when I think about it.

    Our homeowner's insurance covered our loss for our clothing, camera, etc.,
    but not for the art. We asked all of our Italian friends to keep an eye
    out for Roy's paintings at the local markets, perhaps signed with an
    Italian's name, but none ever turned up. My husband grieved for about a day
    and then he was over it! I couldn't believe it. His attitude was, "I
    enjoyed myself while I was painting them and I can still do more!"

    We just put in a heating & ac system in our 1840's farmhouse, so we must
    wait for our bank account to recover before we see Italy again. I'm reading
    Bella Tuscany by Frances Mayes right now and longing for the Italian light.
    Have a great trip and eat some gelato for me too!

    Terry Hammond


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