Wednesday, August 20, 2008

BANKLOOK

Never mind your bankbook; it's your bank look you have to worry about here, ladies. Let me explain:
Today I had to visit the bank and my outfit was determined by this fact. No, not dressing up smartly for the manager to get a business loan or anything like that. I was, on the contrary, just tying to carry out a normal transaction that could not be dealt with via the ATM.
All banks in Italy have lockers in the foyer [or what passes for a foyer] in which you are supposed to leave everything except the essential documents that you will require inside, including your handbag. You then ring a bell and pass through a glass door, which immediately closes behind you. Provided you are deemed to be OK, another door then opens automatically and lets you in - though not in my bank, where the clerk [there is only ever one clerk on duty] leaves his client to take a peek at you while you are sandwiched between the two doors, then presses a button to let you in if he knows you or likes the look of you.
In my particular branch, also, most of the lockers are really tiny and I have ruined many a handbag trying to squash it into one. [I am not a fan of small handbags at the best of times.] There are two slightly larger lockers and two briefcase-sized ones, but these last never have a key in them. This cannot be because of the number of customers as there is normally just the person already at the counter and then me waiting. [The wait, though it can be long, is never as frustrating as that at the Post Office as the place is spacious and airy, and when you do get served you exchange some pleasant banter.]
Anyway, to return to the point, dear reader, what I wear to go to the bank takes much planning, as first I have to decide on a small handbag, then which shoes will go with that and finally which outfit will look all right with both. Get it, chaps?!

23 comments:

Dragonstar said...

That must make life very difficult. I really dislike changing handbags - everything has to go with my favourite portmanteau! I'd have to take a lot more care if I lived where you do.

RobW said...

Sounds like fun. Is it because of the Mafia -- one assumes.

Leslie: said...

Gee I'm so glad you explained all this so that next time I come to Italy (or Sicily) I'll be prepared. Whew, what a procedure!

CherryPie said...

Small handbag? Is there such a thing?

I think if I lived in Sicily, my money would have to be kept under the mattress or maybe in my portmanteau sized handbag ;-)

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, tbrrob. Yes, that is part of the reason. Hi, Leslie. You get used to it! Glad you like big handbags too, cherrypie.

jmb said...

You are so Italian Welshcakes!

Richard Havers said...

Blimey!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your kind thoughts, Welshcakes. Yesterday was rather strange. I mentioned to Meri last night that she had been putting the dogs to bed for 14 years. Well, Ceri - whose particular dog was Badger - might have been involved until he left the island. It was stark change of routine.
Do the big city banks go through this business? I suppose, given the crime history of Italy, it makes sense.

Tom Paine said...

They have similar procedures in some banks in Russia and France. Walked cheerfully through one in the South of France last week wearing a pair of denim shorts and an old casual shirt. Didn't have the handbag problem though. Has anyone ever asked if the time women take on such issues is why there are so few great female artists, composers or philosophers? Think of all the thinking time and creative energy wasted! Time for a new "Campaign for rational dress" (http://www.loyno.edu/~history/journal/1989-0/rodrigues.htm) I think. B^)

Sally said...

Do hope the freshly-coiffed hair didn't suffer! I was once stuck in between the 2 doors in the Monte dei Paschi in Siena in a thundestorm. There's meant to be an emergency procedure but clearly the emergency wasn't too pressing - I knew afterwards just what life is like for a goldfish.

marymaryquitecontrary said...

I know exactly where you are coming from welchcakes. With linen trousers you must have a holiday type bag and shoes that match. With a summer skirt and blouse it must be cute sandals or open toe shoes and matching bag. With winter clothes it must be a heavier looking bag with matching shoes or boots and with ....I could go on and on. My husband can never understand when I say I have no handbag or shoes to match for an outfit.

jams o donnell said...

Hmm it does seem odd that banks have a door policy!

Whispering Walls said...

How very complicated! I suppose the large lockers are full of ancient violin cases.

Trubes said...

Hello Welshcakes:
Well, I hope you left your machine gun at home!
What a palarver though, they'd be better employing a security guard don't you think?
I wouldn't fare well there as I always carry a large bag; Red leather and matching red sandals are my current favourite.
My Girls laugh at me as I always have to have everything matching, which, for some unfathomable reason they don't!

Hope you are darling Simi are well.xx from Chloe.

Di.xx

P.S. Just put a post up for your perusal.Dx

Saretta said...

The dressing up thing is di regola here in Puglia every time you step out of the house. Be it to go to the supermarket, the bank, the drugstore...you do NOT go out without dressing up nicely!

James Higham said...

Good bank wear is an Italian necessity.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Dragonstar, I am with you! Changing bags is such a bother ....
I'll take that as a compliment, jmb! Ciao, RH.
Aileni, I thought of you both all last night and will continue to do so, as I know how it feels. I wish I was there to at least hug you both. Yes, all over Italy, it is like this re banks.
Well, TP, that's a hot potato! Not so much that there aren't any great women philosophers, etc, but why aren't they better known? - Because their domestic lives aren't, or weren't, taken care of by a "wife" figure, I suspect. [See Greer on this - you'll love that!] Now, come on, TP, I'm sure you appreciate a well-turned-out woman as much as the next man, and an old flame of mine [not quite extinguished, for the Welsh never are] told me it was the
"trouble a woman took" over her appearance that attracted him. So here we are again - de Beauvoir's ambiguity- a woman has to be all things to all, whereasa man never does.
That must have been a nightmare, Sally! Thanksfor sharing the tale.
Thank you, MM. Glad you understand.
Yes, very peculiar,jams, but that'sthe way it is!
Never thought of that, WW!
Ciao,Trubes. The larger banksdo employ security men as well. Will be over asap. xx
Ciao, Saretta. It's the same here and I'm glad you are confirming this, as I'm sure some of the men don't believe me!
Quite so, james.

CalumCarr said...

Despite my vast age I do not understand women and clohtes and accessories.

Prob explains a lot re me.

Ellee Seymour said...

I like my shoes and bags to match too. I bet you looked gorgeous.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Calum! Well, you don't need to understand - just tell us we look good! Thanks, Ellee.

Liz Hinds said...

Oh no! That sounds horrendous.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Well, it can be quite a bother, Liz!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Well, it can be quite a bother, Liz!

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