Wednesday, 6 July 2005


Why can't anything be simple? Why does everything here have to be so...difficult? I am coming to a crude realization that the only thing you can do in Italy with any ease whatsoever is spend money. The only thing that has been streamlined here to any level of 21st-century standard is the process of handing over money for something. Anything that doesn't involve you paying for something doesn't count.

Today I made another trip to the Biblioteca Nazionale, full of (justified) trepidation. One book wasn't available downstairs so they sent me upstairs. The lady upstairs couldn't understand why I'd been sent there and sent me back downstairs. One of the books I asked for was in use by another I had to go back upstairs and sit by the desk to look at it quickly before the other reader came back. That book we have in the Taylorian so I wasn't pushed, but the other is not in any UK library. So my requests are getting cancelled and reordered and cancelled through the afternoon, and, because you're only allowed three requests, I can't make any more until tomorrow. Even though I've already seen on of the requested items. It is tremendously frustrating. Nobody is pushed. Nobody wants to care. I don't know why. Maybe they are incompetent. Maybe they aren't paid enough to care. Maybe it's just too hot to worry. I don't know.

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