Christmas Card

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Cinquini
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Christmas Card

Postby Cinquini » 19 Dec 2008, 11:56

Is it a good idea send a Christmas card to an 'anagrafe' officer at comune address? How do they feel about it?

I know that there's no enough time to send christmas card through regular mail from Brazil to Italy, but there's a email card option.

I'm wondering if they would feel ok about receiveing a christmas card on there email box or if they would feel angry 'cause comune email address should be used only for working purposes.
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby nuccia » 19 Dec 2008, 13:14

Well while I think it's a nice gesture, I am not sure the email will let an ecard through do to virus protection software. Even mine gives me grief sometimes and I can't open them at work so it may not be wise.

It probably would have been nicer to send it in the mail. I know several people who have done it in the past.

How about just emailing them Good Wishes without attaching an ecard?
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby Cinquini » 19 Dec 2008, 18:15

nuccia wrote:Well while I think it's a nice gesture, I am not sure the email will let an ecard through do to virus protection software. Even mine gives me grief sometimes and I can't open them at work so it may not be wise.


hummm, I didnt think about anti-virus blocking this kind of message. You're right. It could never get arrived. Better try the regular mail.

nuccia wrote:It probably would have been nicer to send it in the mail. I know several people who have done it in the past.

How about just emailing them Good Wishes without attaching an ecard?


Dont know. People some times are very serious. I think the old-fashioned regular christmas card through mail should have a better reception, if you undestand me (excuse me my poor english).
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby PeterTimber » 19 Dec 2008, 18:51

When sending a card to people who do service for you like building porters, superintendents, concierge etc it is always anticipated that you include a gift of some monies but when someone or a group do a one time favor it is always wise to include some monies for their coffee canteen with a token amount $5.-10. bill. This certainly will go a long way to help you and oothers with their end of day researches...at least this is what I would do. =Peter=

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby liviomoreno » 20 Dec 2008, 07:34

Valmir,
If you send a Xmas card to an Italian 'anagrafe' officer and you include a 5-10$ bill you will simply offend him! Don't do it.

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby PeterTimber » 20 Dec 2008, 13:33

Livio the "officer" that you mention in the anagrafe office is a civl servant, poorly paid,has a family and could use the money for the office in one way or the other. He certainly will appreciate the money very much indeed. Your air of superiority clouds your judgement to my mind. Don't tell me that you always felt insulted if someone gave you a tip when you were starting out as a young man.

I have more money than I need or could ever spend until I die and I still, to this day, would accept a tip from someone who is grateful for something I did and turn around and give it to some street person. =Peter=

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby liviomoreno » 20 Dec 2008, 13:53

Valmir, believe me, I am Italian and I live in Italy. The officer in the anagrafe office is an employee with a salary and is not a beggar. 5$ is charity and if you give more could become corruption.

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby Cinquini » 20 Dec 2008, 14:50

Ok, dont let start a war, please.

I think Peter is right, but for USA or North America, or even our poor South America. But I dont believe that send money for a ufficiale del anagrafe could be a good idea. Europeans think different, just it.

I just want to be warm-hearted, even because I've sent an email asking for information about how to do a citizenship process in Camaiore, what kind of documents, papers, time to get my passport, etc and I'd like to be replied. Since I'm ot a italian spoken (I've studied a lot, but I'm secure spoken italian yet), so I cant make a phone call asking informations.

A Christmas card is just a way of saying 'hey, thanks for all you have done for me til now, but I'll will aks for more in the future'
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby elba » 20 Dec 2008, 23:21

I'm afraid we are looking at two 'totally' different cultures here and that is what (I'm sure) has clouded this issue to the point it has.

Livio is perfectly correct here, if for no other reason than in Italy it is NOT normal ANYWHERE to give tips... Rarely would you give a tip in a restaurant, in an hotel, in fact anywhere - and certainly never to an official of any kind however well or badly paid. It is just not done - or more importantly - not expected!

Now in North America 'everyone' holds their hand out and waits for a tip for just about anything. There it IS EXPECTED! But that's your culture...

But here in Italy IT IS NOT!!!

As for the question of poor pay being a reason to send money to a government official (because that is, after all, what we're talking about here), I too would find that offensive... but I am used to, and understand the culture and mentality here.

I'm sure that Peter's memories of Italy will include a number of Italians - perhaps in hotels and such - who would (and still do) accept tips from Americans who expect to pay anyway. But equally, I'm not so sure that such 'personal experiences' would include tips (that could be construed as bribes) being paid to any officials.


Christmas cards are not (normally) used/sent here either, but a card to say thank you - and to keep your name in thier mind is a nice gesture which I'm sure they will appreciate - but NOT with money in it...THAT makes it offensive!

I'm sorry Peter, but I'm afraid I think you've got this one wrong!
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby PeterTimber » 20 Dec 2008, 23:54

I agree with you wholeheartedly but I am exercising my cultural imperatives and it cannot be misconstrued save for an occasional smirk and "fess'americani' on their lips or hearts. Most people if so offended would send the money back with a thank you for the card but I have never heard of any Italian returning money save for me(believe it or not). I once wrote away to my family town of origin asking for a birth record and I enclosed $5.00 for stamps and it was returned with the document explaining that the service is free and there is no need for my money to pay for the stamps. I then sent $10.00 for coffee (this was in the 60's) for the office staff. and I never heard a word back nor was anyone obviously offended.

I still think that despite the fact that a tip is not expected, it is still a courteous gesture to send if one is so inclined. No one could possibly think illof the sender save for some disgraziato. =Peter=

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby nuccia » 21 Dec 2008, 00:53

Well, these are all valid points and I think its pretty much up to Cinquini now to decide what to do as he already stated what his thoughts were on this matter.

With Cinquini's permission, I would like to close this thread as I believe he has already had his question answered.

:D
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby elba » 21 Dec 2008, 01:39

If people are so convinced that they will be 'helping' poor, underpaid civil servants by enclosing money with their requests to enable these clerks to buy a coffee, or whatever, then enclosing a foreign banknote for them will cause problems because:

1. A bank would NOT change a single $5 bill - that is (currently) only €3.59 - before charges...

2. Exchange charges on small amounts would leave next to nothing of the original sum.

3. The cash officially belongs to the Comune to whom the letter was addressed.

4. To send the money back would entail a cost of €0.85c ($1.183) out of their pocket for postage on something they cannot use!

SO SEND THEM A €URO BANK NOTE...

If you really want to have any hope that they will accept your 'kind donation' towards their life in poverty, lowly family finances, or even just towards a cup of coffee - why not pay 'your' local bank to exchange your $5 or $10 into €UROs. That way you will bear the exchange costst and not burden these poor disgraziati (?) with the extra expense that your $'s would carry!


BTW - just as an aside... It is illegal to send cash through the post in most countries. If the post is subjected to electronic examination it is quite possible that any letters containing banknotes will be confiscated by the Customs, the money removed and the letters destroyed.
Just a though...
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Re: Christmas Card

Postby PeterTimber » 21 Dec 2008, 05:33

Dear Elba very good point about sending a couple of EUROS..I am going to encourage people to purchase some from their local American express office where they buy and sell currency if its convenient. Here in NY and in the suburbs it is easy to buy Euros. But I can see that peopleinthe sticks would have much difficulty and perhaps dispense with the notion. You have convinced me not to encourage US$ but Euros If possible.

Hopefully people can now sleep nights knowing that half of Italys impiegati are no longer being offended ny the likes of peoplelike me. =Peter=

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Re: Christmas Card

Postby liviomoreno » 21 Dec 2008, 05:43

PeterTimber wrote:... I then sent $10.00 for coffee (this was in the 60's) for the office staff. and I never heard a word back nor was anyone obviously offended...


That was 40-50 years ago, when a monthly salary for an official was 50-60$...

:evil:


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