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When the Wheels Leave the Ground…

August 26, 2013

Soon we’ll be in the land of olives, grapes and Michelangelo.

We’re leaving a bit early this year to attend a wedding. Giorgio Rossini stayed with us here in Atlanta for 6 weeks 17 years ago, when he was 17. We responded to a request from one of Franca’s mother’s friends to provide a place for a young man from Mantova who wanted to improve his English and see a bit of the USA. It was only on the way to the airport we asked ourselves if there was even a possibility we had made this decision in error… without weighing all the possibilities. Not to worry, as soon as we met him at the international terminal we knew everything was fine. He was and is an exceptional young man and we had a great time for his entire stay.

Since then we have visited him and his family in Mantova , a visit that explained why he is the way he is. His parents and his sister are delightful people and very generous with their time and attention. And now Sara becomes  part of the family. We’re very anxious to meet her and wish them well on their way to a happy life together. It’ll be nice to see the family again and get to spend some time in Mantova.

As we have traveled to Italy and Europe in general, I’ve come to realize that there are things I can do to make the traveling easier. First thing is stay in a nice place near the airport for a day or two. Get some sleep, walk about, then move on. Divide the trips into 3-4 hour drives and take it easy. Eat well from the get go. In that regard we’ll land in Munich, stay in Erding for the night and into the next day before we move on to Mantova. We’ll get there a couple of days before the wedding, get to see the family and the sights, then attend the wedding. On to Pietrabuona for almost a month… day trips to see family and friends, Florence, Lucca, Carrara, maybe Aulla, Monte Carlo (not that one the other one, in Tuscany) maybe a trip down toward Rome to see some Etruscan ruins. Mostly we’ll wander around Pescia, up the valley, over to Montecatini and spend a lot of time talking to Maristella and Serena at the Fattoria about important things like how well the crops have done, visitors she has had through the year and the weather.

On the return to Munich we’ll stop for a couple of days in Glorenza, one night in Erding, over to the Munich airport and home.

The reference to wheels up… when the wheels of the airplane leave the ground the US is gone. Telephone calls, knocks on the door, trucks on the street, sirens in the night… all gone.

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