This leads me too a slight diversion: I am about 2 received emails away from telling the School of Physics to suck it up and stop crying about how cold it is. You will be given permission to bitch (5 minutes only, but that's an in-joke) when it either drops to -35 with a -55 wind chill, or when it gets up to 42 with a high humidity. Also on the topic of received mail, does everyone know Adobe Creative Suite 3 is out? I certainly do.
Back to the main story: owing to this convergence of 20 or so pubs less than 1 km from my digs, the absolution of all sins I received in Assisi is now wholly gone. Jimmy P and I spent many a night there last week blaspheming, indulging to excess and perving before he went back to Spain. A lovely barmaid with no English managed to tell James he is 'pretty' and has 'beautiful eyes'. Did I pay out on him? Yes I did. It was on such a night that I discovered that the animals larger than cats and with thin tails I have seen floating down the river are not in fact rats but otters moved in from Argentina. Well, there you go.
While I'm rounding up all the trivia, I don't think I relayed this anecdote. I have previously complained of my ill luck in partaking of the concert free-for-all that Straya misses out on but North America and Europe take for granted. As well as just missing out on many a thing in Canada, I missed Novelle Vague in Bratislava by 2 days and have since discovered they played Melbourne in my absence. The only act I have managed to see was a home town one (see last post). Another disappointment unfolds thusly: between Bratislava and Budapest, the Heinekin Jammin' Music Fest was to play Venezia Mestre and I was to fulfill one of 13-year-old Paul's most deeply held desires: to see Aerosmith rockin' up a storm. I bought my ticket weeks in advance, got up early on the day after sleeping through a loud storm, caught the train for half an hour, walked for an hour in the brutal heat and arrived at the venue just on time. No-one around. To security: 'Where is the entry' (or something to that effect in butchered I-talian). Security to me, under the blistering sun: 'The concert is canceled. There was a tornado.' A TORNADO?! Yes, a tornado. Not a cyclone, not a hail storm, a full tornado like on cartoons. It seems tornadoes destroy everything within a 10 metre wide strip and leave all else a bit wet but intact. This 10 metre strip fell right across the stage.
Rant over, but I did manage to include many a colon.
Padova time is almost spent, and I have all but finished the grunt work on my academic tasks here but sadly I fear the paper is doomed to drag on until I get home. On to la Republica del Sudafrica after a detour to Switzerland and Germany.