Monday, 23 November 2020


Over two weeks ago we re-applied for residency and asked for an acknowledgment, we heard nothing and sent our first reminder.  I was of the opinion we have made the application it’s up to the comune when they deal with it.  Mr FF is more anxious and wanted confirmation that they had received our documents,  though last time we applied they did nothing for a month and 3 reminders until we went in person to the office to be told the form was incorrect and rejected.

At the weekend, late Saturday night to be exact, we received an email saying our third application was rejected because we hadn’t submitted our tax codes (we had) and that because I am a dependent (I am not) they needed our marriage certificate translated into Italian, said certificate is back home in Yorkshire.  The address the email came from did not accept replies, Mr FF discovered that when he tried to tell them we had given our tax codes and that my pension is sufficient for me to support myself according to their rules if not my requirement for knitting wool and toiletries.  We despair, presumably they will make us reapply as they simply reject our application every time, there is no discussion or request for more information, computer says no.  We now have four different email addresses relating to our applications, we keep trying to respond but I doubt it will do any good.

Here’s another example of legislation gone mad.  We needed a new back windscreen wiper for our car, it’s a Saab and spares are not easy to find here.  We went down to the auto parts shop in the new part of the village, the man found details of what we needed and said he’d have to order it.  Fine said Mr FF please do so, but they needed to have the documents for our car to verify the order.  Of course we hadn’t taken them with us though unlike our marriage certificate we do bring them to Italy.   I know we needed a tax code when we bought a new sofa but this is ridiculous.  What would happen for example if you were buying for someone else, say you wanted to surprise your wife with a new headlamp for her car, which isn’t beyond the realms of Mr FF’s idea of what constitutes a nice surprise.

We went off to do our weekly shop and popped into what I call the plastic palace next to the shopping centre.  These megastores are appearing all over our region, usually run by oriental people (am I allowed to say that) and massively stocked with household items, cleaning products, toiletries, toys, lighting, an emporium of unnecessary goods made of or packaged in plastic, mostly of unknown brand and poor quality.

They had lots windscreen wipers, not the one we wanted but parts that claimed to be universal, and I’m sure we could have made a purchase without providing our car details, birth certificates or confirming our blood groups. Anyway I prefer not to support these places, most Italians I know feel the same and I was sorry to see recently that a rather up market locally owned clothes store nearby has turned into another plastic palace. 

We would prefer to support our local auto shop but Mr FF found what he needed online, 10 euros cheaper and no documentation required, now there is just the challenge of waiting for delivery.


  1. I have lived in Italy for over 40 years now and the bureaucracy never ceases to amaze me. This year the dreaded virus has added to their list of excuses and the local state workers seem to relish it. It seems the natural excuse for inefficiency!! Imagine if Jeff Bezos could supply the various needed documentation, he could be King of the World as well as being the richest! Keep going and buona fortuna ~ Ro (N.W. Italy).

  2. Well... finding a right original part for a Saab seems to something close to a miracle, I had to order one electric thingy from US. It was used and repaired (no new one available in this realm). It was made in Sweden, repaired in UK, sent to Sweden, and when we ordered it, it was firstly sent to US and then back to UK and then to us in the northern Europe and we had to pay taxes because it was sent from US. I think that would make any Italian proud.

  3. Love the name "Plastic Palace" so much more descriptive than the US "Dollar Store."

  4. Sadly it seems to be the way of the world.

  5. The level of bureaucracy is unbelievable. I do hope you stocked up on flip flops when you called in at the Plastic Palace!