Scotland, France and Italy now seem to be a bit of a distant memory as we’ve settled into life at home – although without work, so can’t complain too much! Since coming home 10 days ago, we’ve done a fair bit of house sorting and now have a huge pile of stuff for a car boot sale to come; we’ve dug lots of weeds out of the garden together with the last of the 2013 leeks which were still really yummy; been to a shipping forecast fancy dress party and most importantly caught up with family and friends. We’ve saved the photos on the computer and considered where to go and what to do next. As well as this we’ve reflected on where we’ve been and what we’ve seen so far. These are my top ten reflections – in no particular order…
- Why is Rome quite so full of lavishly decorated churches and cathedrals – and who pays the upkeep? All gorgeous of course, but so many of them. Are they all full on a Sunday morning?
- Why do the Italians make such scrummy gelato? can you buy it over here?
- Siena is really the most beautiful city, small and quaint.
- Donkey racing around a small market square is great for a Sunday afternoon of entertainment.
- When will the French and Italians fork out for seats on their toilets and ban the ‘hole in the floor’ type loos as being unsanitary and unusable.
- Venice doesn’t smell and is really lovely although very expensive – take sandwiches and a flask.
- Italians and French are either very proud of cars made in their own country or they’re subsidised by their governments to drive them?
- Not speaking Italian in Italy made me feel a bit incapacitated, but the Italians are great at speaking English and were extremely friendly.
- If you go to the Vatican, make sure you climb the dome of St Peters Basilica and post cards from the Vatican post office. They’ll get to your loved ones in UK more quickly than the normal Italian post.
- If you want to see quaint walled towns, built on hills, Tuscany’s the place to go. All gorgeous.
What’s next for us – well, more jobs around the house, being here for the kids whilst they’re both back from uni, a brass band concert, Easter with wider family and a few lunches out with friends. After that, the plans starting to come together. In only 100 days from today the Commonwealth games start and we’ll be Clydesiders doing our bit, so we have a trip to Glasgow for more training, some time in Guernsey, a TOGS weekend in Devon, Crick boat show, Edinburgh Fringe, Greenbelt festival, as well as helping mum clear out her attic. All good fun and lots to look forward to……