by Melinda Gallo

Computer breakdown

If I could've planned for my computer to stop working on me, it would not have been this week. All the service centers in and around Florence are closed, and some were already closed last week as well. The closest one to me will be open next Monday, but most of the others will be closed until the end of the month. I panicked Monday morning when my computer didn't start up. Fortunately, I have an extra computer that Alessandro uses so I could at least get on the Internet to get information about all the shops nearby. I couldn't work because all of my files were on my now broken computer although I could find most of them on my backup drive, which fortunately I just updated a couple of weeks ago.

I was in the US when I bought my last computer two years ago, and I had recently been thinking about getting myself a new one. I don't know if my previous Macintosh is completely dead, but even if I take it in for service, it'll be out of commission at least a few more days while the service centers take a look at it. I usually get a new computer every two years because technology makes such amazing improvements, so it's not so bad to get one now. I searched on-line for a place to buy a new Macintosh and the only place around that was open was Media World at I Gigli, a centro commerciale (shopping mall) outside of the city center.

Alessandro and I rushed there to see what they had in stock, but it turned out not a lot. They said that were expecting to receive more computers in September, but that was too far away for me. They even checked their other stores in Tuscany, and no one had the one I wanted in stock.

I ended up checking Apple on-line at Media World on the MacBook Pro that I wanted to buy. I couldn't buy it on-line, so I punched the number into my cellphone and went outside to call. Within five minutes, I had ordered my new MacBook Pro, and was feeling happy again.

Only two days later, my new MacBook Pro arrived. The corriere (delivery person) called me on my cellphone to say that he'd be at my place in 15 minutes. I looked outside the window to see if he'd park his car in the piazza, but the campanello (buzzer) rang only ten minutes later and I ran down to greet him.

For someone who was working in the heat of the day, he was very jovial. He handed me my computer and wished me a good day. I thanked him profusely as if he had just given me a million dollar check.

I got everything up and running on my computer, and was back in business in only an hour. The past couple of days I felt as if someone had taken one of my hands away because every time I wanted to do something on my computer, I felt as if it wasn't going to be that easy.

In the end, I feel quite lucky because I got a replacement Macintosh in such a short time and while I was computer-less, I was able to finish reading a couple of books. It was almost as if I had a mini-vacation from work, which was a welcomed bonus.

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