Well, this certainly is not the topic I was hoping to write about for my first blog back in Italy.
I had put down as alarmists those who talked about gypsies picking pockets in crowded tourist destinations….until a friend of ours had his wallet stolen on the Spanish Steps in Rome last year.
And had I scoffed at people who warned against leaving baggage in your parked car…..until our arrival last week.
We thought it was such a good idea to get our new cell phone cards at a shopping mall near Fiumicino airport, rather than take a chance that the smaller shop in Orvieto might not have them. We were gone no more than 15 minutes. I can only put down our obvious lack of good judgment to the dangerous combination of complacency mixed with jetlag. We were, after all, in Rome — not Orvieto.
Alan was the first to see the pile of glass under the rear driver’s-side window, and initially we were relieved because they were unsuccessful in stealing the garment bag that they had managed to get only ¼ of the way out. It took a few minutes to realize that there was indeed a bag missing, and it turned out to be the most valuable. This was one of our carry-ons, and the reason you have carry-ons is to hold the items you really want to have with you. We’re still remembering important things that are now permanently missing from our lives.
When you’re robbed, it makes you realize just how important seemingly ordinary things are. For instance – while our computers were safe in the other carry-on, all the wiring for them was missing. So the fun you had re-arranging your photos on the plane now results in a computer with no power. We had to be judicious about using our phones.
They took all my prescription medicines. You have no idea how difficult it is to gather up 6 months worth of a medicine. Today’s insurance industry will only give you 90 days worth, though you can get 1 “vacation over-ride” per year. This sounds like it makes up the ½ year you need, but your original prescriptions can only be filled after a specific date, and if you’re leaving a week or 2 before, your only option is to get a new prescription and pay full price.
Alan gave me a great new device for music called Sonos when I moved into my apartment. If you have WIFI available, you can just plug this in anywhere in your house. You control it from your computer or iPhone or iPad, and can listen to music from your iTunes library, the radio or one of the systems like Pandora. The quality was so fabulous that we decided to bring it along with us. Gone.
When someone takes your property, you realize that even inexpensive jewelry can have great meaning to you, and if it happens to be expensive, its worth is much more than the original price when you know you’ll never see it again.
And then there was a little wooden box with a small useless lock and key dangling from the front, and a brass plate on the top engraved with a name: Orson. They took Orson’s ashes.
So what are the outcomes? Well….it turns out that Apple international is as good as Apple USA. Alan ordered the cables Monday and we got them Wednesday. We hadn’t realized at the time that the mice (mouses???) were also gone and ordered them Wednesday. They arrived Friday. Replacement cost for 2 computer, 2 iPad and 2 iPhone power supplies plus 2 mice (mouses???): $465
We’re not replacing the Sonos now because things are so much more expensive here, but buying it when we get back should run around: $450
My jewelry somehow got tucked in the “wrong” place and was therefore saved. Alan’s more expensive watches didn’t fare so well. I don’t even want to ask about those losses.
Getting my medicine has been an on-going saga and I’m hoping I can make a somewhat amusing story out of it to share with you at some point….assuming the saga ever ends. I have no idea what the replacement cost will be, but I do know that what was stolen was worth around $300.
We haven’t bothered trying to figure out the costs for the 2 iPods, 1 iTouch, iPhone car charger, a “classic” first-generation iPhone, high-end earphones, a camera and who knows what else. It’s now a week later and we’re still discovering things that are missing.
And as for my little box…. I think this is harder on me than when Orsie died. I knew he was old and tired, and I wanted him to be at peace. But having his remains here in Orvieto, where he’d spent so many good hours with friends and the wonderful Italian sun, was going to be my peace. Unfortunately, as far as losses go, Orson’s ashes turn out to be the most expensive: priceless.