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Countdown to Italy??

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I’ve been a very bad blogger lately, I don’t know where the time goes. A lot goes into work, unfortunately; the gym, far too much time (given that the results are so poor--that's me, just below); meddling in other people’s travel plans.... all in all, it makes for full days.

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I have also been working, full tilt, on arranging and then re-arranging my plans for upcoming trip to Italy (less than three weeks to lift off! Presumably.)

Emphasis on re-arranging. I don’t think I’ve ever had to change so many plans.

I hope it’s not an ill omen.

First, I messed up my Italian cell phone. I thought I was keeping my Italian phone number current – but I wasn’t. So, I had to get a new one. Now, when I get to Italy, I’ll have to reset all my prompts to get voice mail and those wonderful TIM adverts in English.

Then, I had to keep re-arranging the car rental. First, I had an automatic booked for 10 days, including part of my stay in Anghiari, where I’m renting a house for one week, followed by a week in the Umbrian countryside. My friend V convinced me we could share her car while in Anghiari, so I called Auto Europe and shortened the rental period to one week.

Then, V abruptly dropped out of the house rental AND the entire trip to Italy. So much for sharing a rental car. I went back to AutoEurope to get a two week car rental. And with an automatic, that wasn’t cheap.

AutoEurope muddled the deal and I wound up with no car rental. That was bad. But my friend P, who can drive a manual, stepped in with an offer to share the house and car rental. So, back to AutoEurope to reserve a manual for one week, followed by my automatic. This, of course, was less expensive than a two-week automatic rental. So that’s good.

I can just imagine, my file with AutoEurope must be as thick as the Toronto phone book.

Of course, I need an international driver’s permit. Fine. Two months ago, I sent in all the paperwork and a $15 cheque to the CAA which handles these things. No response. Finally, last week I phone the CAA to track my application. They assured me that they never received my application; an agent went through their entire list of IDPs issued for ALL of 2010. My name wasn’t there.

Grrr. I had new photos taken, made arrangements to go into their office and make another application. That night – literally, that same night -- what was in my mail? My international driver’s permit. From the CAA. Sigh.

I had to change my flight. My perfect itinerary went out the window; it now includes a five-hour layover in the Montreal airport.

Oh well. It makes for a lot of re-arranging and that always makes me worried that something (like a car reservation) has fallen through the crack.

None of it will matter, though, in about three weeks when I’m drinking a glass of Italian wine on an Italian terrace watching the sunset (like this Montefalco kitty!)

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Comments (10)

Wow, that's a lot of changes to work out. I'm glad your friend P came aboard. You are right, all the stress will completely disappear once you're there. Love the sun bathing kitty!

Kathryn:

WOW, that is a lot of changes. I do believe the wine on the terrace will be sheer bliss. Back to yard work...

sandrac:

Annie, I loved this kitty. We chatted a bit, I kept expecting something profound (or at least, Italian) to come out of him. But I guess "Meow" is universal.

Hi Kathryn, I can only hope that all the changes will happen before and not during the trip.

Good luck with the yard work, it looks like you've got great weather at last! (But hope you're not getting clouds of wildfire smoke drifting in.)

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Sandra, only three weeks to go. Wow, time sure has flown by. I'm glad you had another friend to jump in for that one week and that you got your IDP. That cute kitty sure does make the warmth of Italy very inviting. Soon you'll be right there enjoying a nice sunset with a glass of fine wine in hand and like Annie said all the pre-trip changes that caused you any stress will be a very distant memory.

Enjoy your pre-trip anticipation.

sandrac:

Thanks, Kathy! Sometimes I think the anticipation before the trip is half the fun.....already, I can see myself -- like Mr. Cat in the photo -- baking in the early evening sun. Too bad for him that he can't grip a nice glass of wine as I will!

Wow - there is a 'rainbow' at the end, tho. Good thing you seem to be flexible!
Enjoyed the photos along with the post:-) Think happy thoughts - the euro is dropping -- at least for us travelers that's a good thing. Italy is now in the throes of what the US has been experiencing over the past year and a half.

What an adventure! You'll be glad to be back in wonderful Italy after all of this!

So sorry you have had to deal with all these changes and stress. Glad you were able to find someone else to share the apartment. Cracked up seeing the little piggy picture.

sandrac:

Menehune, I'm already forgetting all the little annoyances -- bygones!

Hi Jerry, you must also be into serious, final trip preparations.

Hi Girasoli, I love that little piggy pix! That's how I'm going to be around the fabulous food in Umbria.

When you land on Italian soil, all of the stress will have been worth it!

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