One thing Reg and I have learned, in our somewhat limited international travels, is to always remember to pack our sense of humor. After failed attempts to learn some key Italian phrases, we were pleased to learn that the property manager of our rental apartment in Rome spoke English quite well. After a short tour and explanation of the two massive door keys (which look like something out of a fairy tale), we expressed our thanks and waved goodbye from the street.
Eager to settle in, we climbed the stairs to our fourth floor apartment. I inserted the key into the lock and spun it to the left as we had been instructed to do. Meeting with resistance, I continued to turn it both left and right, with Reg shouting encouragement over my shoulder. Suddenly, we heard an angry voice from behind the door. “How did that woman get into our apartment?” I wondered, followed immediately by the realization that I had miscalculated and we were standing on the third floor; one floor below our apartment door! As the door flew open, we were greeted by a string of unpleasant sounding Italian, surely not listed in our phrase book!