Kate from Italy writes:
I moved to Italy two years ago to marry my long time boyfriend. We married in May of 2008, and then bought an apartment that August (because buying a house in Italy is about as easy as getting a brick to fly). In October we moved into the house, and are about to celebrate one year in our gorgeous apartment here in the 'burbs of Modena, Italy.
Everything was fine and dandy until about February of this year. The apartment next to ours was up for rent and we noticed a chubby single man move in. He didn't cause a lot of problems, he was a pretty cordial guy, until he started talking to our other neighbors. Time went on, the weather got warmer, and he began to live his social life on his balcony. Yelling and laughing and being a jackass, making other people live on their balconies to yell and laugh with/at him.
We haven't been able to afford to buy an air conditioner this year and in the hot summer months, it is impossible to keep the windows and shutters closed. This asshole is on his balcony until 2:30 in the morning flirting with the girls in the apartment opposite his, joking with the people opposite our apartment, and he doesn't realize just how LOUD he is. His voice can be heard in Moscow without an amplifier. Not kidding. Add that to the fact that my husband and I have jobs and we wake up very early in the morning.
The last straw was this morning. I am enjoying a day off, and I took the laundry downstairs to my garage. I got it started, and made a shocking discovery. Over the course of the last 5 months, our beloved neighbor has been leaving the downstairs door open so that the girls in the apartment opposite his can get in and cone to his door at all hours of the day or night without using a key. This pissed me off because we have many valuable belongings that could be at risk. As I was coming back up the stairs this morning from starting the laundry, I noticed poop. Yes, poop. Poop on the ground floor. Poop on the stairs. Poop on his and my doormats! His libido and douchbaggery has allowed rats into our brand new apartment building. My husband keeps telling me that this is normal in Italy. Loud neighbors living out their lives on their balconies, not working, never sleeping, wearing Dolce & Gabbana and Armani that are ten sizes too small and give them muffin-tops from hell. He tells me this is the way it is and I shouldn't let it bother me. We'll just buy an air conditioner, shut all of the windows and shutters, and call it good. But if I see even ONE rat-poop on my doormat again in the future, I will personally stick it in my neighbor's fat mouth and hope he gets dysentery and dies on his toilet.
No doubt Italian culture is vastly different from other parts of the world, I would guess you moved there from somewhere in N. America? You are also not the first to complain about similar situations. I have friends in Toronto who bought a house in an Italian neighbourhood and loved it, until they realized the quaint little cafe on the corner turns into a full-fledged club on Friday nights and is especially rowdy when there is a football (soccer) match on.
You'll never get this man to stop living on his balcony, and you shouldn't even try. Your husband is right about that being the culture. I suggest you embrace it. Catch a nap in the early evening or upon returning from work. Get in the habit of eating dinner late and spending time on your balcony as well. Alternately you could get in the habit of blasting gangsta rap from your balcony at 6am.
I would focus on the more direct concern of leaving the door open. I suspect that if you approach the man (over a bottle of nice wine) and express your concerns about the security of your apartment that he will be more then understanding. Good luck!
Monday, September 28, 2009
Kate from Italy writes:
Posted by Ca1v1n at 7:00 PM