This morning we had a phonecall from a courier who was bringing a bed for Clive.
He phoned again a couple of hours later and said he was in front of a bar in Valtopina.
I directed him over the bridge in the photo (a new bridge, rather grandiose for its function) and then to the start of our road. He was to go exactly a kilometre along it before taking a turn onto a branch of the road; I told him what the sign said.
“My vehicle is green and white,” he advised me.
He was hoping I would go down and collect him. I reiterated I would give him directions.
“I’ll never make it,” he grumbled. “I can’t manage the road.”
He hadn’t even started along it and was now apparently expecting me to take the bed off him and deliver it myself. I reassured him that refuse collection vehicles, GPL deliveries, builders’ lorries and couriers of every description make it up to us without problems.
He carried on complaining under his breath. I guess he was Albanian from his accent.
To check he had the right road to begin with, I asked if he could see a yellow house on the left.
“Yes. Do I have to go any further?”
The yellow house is scarcely fifty metres from the start of the road – certainly not a kilometre, so yes, he had to go further.
I offered to stay on the line but he rang off and there was silence for half an hour when it should have taken him about five minutes to get to us. I phoned him back.
“I can’t make it to you. It’s just like I said – I can’t manage the road.”
I told him in no uncertain terms that he should at least have phoned to let me know the situation and suggested he contact his company.
“I already have,” he said.
After a while I phoned the company myself.
“Oh yes. We know. Our delivery vehicle got stuck in the mud.”
“What mud? It’s asphalted all the way till the last tiny bit and if he’d got that far I would have seen him.”
“The driver must have taken the wrong turn, then.”
That seemed the most likely explanation but shortly after, he was back on the phone, all amenability. It turned out that he’d grounded the vehicle taking the turn into the branch road. I have to say I sympathise. It’s a brute of a turn. He’d had to call the fire brigade to rescue him and they advised the delivery be made with a smaller vehicle – on Monday, we hope.
This is what living here is like!