I guess I’ll survive the week. Sleep has been elusive, but the daylight hours have been OK. “Vale,” as they say in Spain. (OK, Cool, Fine, Great.)
Monday night — Dale’s birthday — Jerry and I went to Carmela for dinner. The service was, as always, warm and friendly. The mojitos were not, as they usually are, delicious. Remember “Carmela” who walked around like she owned the place? Well, her name’s not Carmela. It’s Mai. Her son manages things, and he is extremely nice. He asked how things were and I told him the mojitos were kind of odd and not as good as usual. He had them made again, but they still were disappointing. Apparently, they had different brown sugar and it completely changed the consistency. Oh well. I drank mine anyway and Jerry and I toasted to Dale’s memory.
|THE ANTIQUES MARKET TODAY AT CALLE FERIA.|
On the walk over, I noticed that Jerry appeared to be a bit down. He told me during dinner that his mood had crashed. I told him simply and directly that it wasn’t his turn. We have an unwritten rule that we can’t both be totally out of sorts at the same time. It was my turn. He laughed, said I was right, and saved it for another day. What a trooper.
|JESUS AND MANY VIRGINS STANDING GUARD OUTSIDE A GRAND OLD BAR.|
Tuesday afternoon, I met Albert and Co. for a quick beer. Always a pleasure. Jerry and I then had a delightful dinner out with Margarita, who saw our apartment for the first time and gave it a rave review and her Sevillana Seal of Approval.
|A LITTLE BIT OF THIS. A LITTLE BIT OF THAT.|
Tuesday evening, Jerry said he would give the English-language customer service line at Vodafone one more try to see if we could make any progress with our home phone. Our assumption was that he would again be unsuccessful and I would then walk over to the Vodafone store and put up a bit of a stink. He phoned. He got a wonderful rep, who had him explain everything and then repeated it back to him to make sure he clearly understood. He then got the technical department on the line and worked with them while translating to Jerry. He would instruct Jerry to do something and ask for the results. He’d then relay the info to the techies for more input. He finally asked how the phone was plugged into the router — in line 1 or line 2. The Telefonica installer had it plugged into line 2. The rep told Jerry to change it to line 1. Jerry did so and the problem was solved. We had service. Jerry, in his exuberance, offered the rep 28 gold stars. The rep was very excited to have them. So, we are grateful to an individual at Vodafone who was smart, helpful, diligent, and successful. We are not grateful to the other six phone reps at Vodafone who lied to us for three weeks. The rep gets 28 gold stars. Vodafone gets a thumbs down.
|THERE ACTUALLY WERE SOME TREASURES AMONG THE RUINS.|
This morning we met Albert for breakfast at Casa Santos. We hope he appreciates how special he is to see us cleaned up and out of the house for a 9:20 breakfast. Lola joined us. She and I are going to start getting together twice a week for an hour at Santos. Tuesdays we’ll speak only English and Thursdays we’ll speak only Spanish. Margarita happened to drop by while we were there and we all had a great time together. Jerry and I then joined Margarita for a walk over to Calle Feria. Every Thursday morning, there is an antiques and second-hand market in the neighborhood. Lots of people. Lots of wonderful finds. Lots of junk. Margarita found some great old books. Jerry and I, the former conspicuous consumers, saw loads of things our old selves would have snapped up. We resisted. We were seriously tempted by a spectacular ceramic pot in an elegant wrought iron stand. It would be great in the living room for a large plant. I asked the price and was told it was from Triana (well, no surprise that ceramic work in Sevilla would come from across the river in Triana where most of the ceramics were made) and it was 400 euros ($600). We passed. Instead we bought three beautiful, intricate, antique brass handles that we needed for our dining room cabinet and a cabinet in my bedroom. Total cost: 12 euros. You CAN teach an old dog new tricks.
|HIS MARKETING STRATEGY DIDN’T APPEAR TO DO HIM ANY GOOD.|