Friday, March 4, 2011

Western Union...It's Fast Once You Get There

We're trying to rent an apartment in Venice for next week.  My first apartment fell through because they asked for more money for "insurance" and I was feeling suspicious.  So that's over.

My backup plan was more expensive, but I emailed the owner today to ask whether she could get me the keys quickly enough.  She said she could get them to me Monday morning, assuming I sent the money via Western Union today.  This was at 3 pm.

We hoofed it down to the bank to get the money, and it was...chiuso.  So we were able to pull some money out of the ATM, but not enough for the rental.  Our friend the banker saw us from inside, and opened the doors.  Can you believe it?  He opened the bank for US, gave me money when I explained what was happening, and was a complete angel.  When I introduced my 6th kid, he told me he had one thing to say: "STOP". 

I had looked up the addresses of the two WU points in town.  The first one was near the bank, so we set off.  Nope, the machine wasn't working, and wouldn't work until tomorrow.

I sent the kids to the grocery store (it was getting on for 4:15 by this point), and hauled myself up to the other address.  Would you believe it?  It was the tabachi of our friend (the alimentari lady's dad).  But it was...chiuso.  And no indication that it would reopen.  So I went to the alimentari...chiuso, likewise.  And no schedule.  BUT...there was a phone number on the door.  On the off-chance that it would work, I called and reached a man.  It was the tabachi owner!  Between us, we agreed that he'd be there in 20 minutes. 

So, at 4:55, I was finalizing the WU transfer. 

Time for Money to Get from Via San Quirico to Western Union?  2 hours
Time for Money to Get from Todi to England?  10 minutes.

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