Not that long ago we finally decided, after a year or two of procrastinating, we had finally made a decision. We had an excuse to do it this year. We also had an excuse to do it in a few years time, that is, somebody’s major birthday, but another person’s major birthday in 2017 was the catalyst to shorten the time lag, and to be honest some of us couldn’t wait that long. Life is too short to wait too long and give yourself the chance to find an excuse to pull out and not do the important things in life, the things you dream about, things you think you can’t afford (as opposed to the things you know you actually can’t afford). What you can’t afford to do is wait, if you want to do something, and it’s important then you find the the time, and whatever else it needs, you don’t know what’s around the corner, so bloody well get on and do it!
Oh, you’re probably wondering what it is we’re going to do, at least I’m guessing that might be the case?
Well, it’s another trip, to a place some of us have been to before, at different times, a place we loved staying in, and the group of 8 intrepid travellers have decided 1 week here won’t do us any harm. The destination – a Tuscan hill town south of Florence called Cortona. The travellers are Paul and Genelle (Genelle’s 60th birthday is the excuse), John and Sonya (Sonya has a big one coming up but it’s a few years away), Jane and Andrew, and Dave and Alison – the group is to be known as either Otto Australiani Viaggiatori in Italia (Eight Australian Travellers in Italy), or I thought something shorter and easier like Il Gruppo ( The Group). I like “Il Gruppo” so that’s what it is, for me at least, and that’s at least for Hong Kong, Cortona and Venezia.
Now me being a “detail man”, I’ve done up a spreadsheet and estimated, pretty closely I reckon, the amount of food, alcohol and coffee we’ve consumed planning this trip. And without giving the detail and boring you stupid, its a f…..g lot, of all categories.
30th September 2017 – Dubbo to Sydney then Sydney to Hong Kong. 2 days in Hong Kong
Hong Kong to Milan then train from Milan to Florence and on to Cortona – a Tuscan hill top town for a week
Most of us then go to Venice, Dave and Al go to Croatia. After Venice we all go our own ways, John and Sonya to the Italian lakes, Jane and Andrew to Amsterdam and Rhodes (Greece), and Genelle and I to Berlin, Prague, Vienna and Rome.
7 weeks to go – bloody well hurry up!!!!!
“Il Gruppo” consists of ( be vewy careful Paolo);
Andrew – alias “Big Andrew” known associate of Jimmy the Greek ( can I say that?) or “Grande Andrew” In Italian. Plan B could “The Number Cruncher” which is “Il Numero Cruncher”
Jane – alias “Sister J” = in Italian “Sorella J” ( as in nurse ) have to do better than that but it needs time and other input
John – alias “Commando” = “Commando” in Italian, thats origianl isn’t it! No explanation needed
Sonya – alias “Agent S” or “Agente S” No explanation needed
Alison – alias “The Queen” Italian is “La Regine”. As in the bowel queen
Dave – alias “Green Man” = “Uomo Verde” which sounds like some sort of food
Genelle – alias “The Shopper”, only needs 1 letter, no time for any more. In Italian it translates as “Il Negozio”. That sounds Godfatherish – which is sort of appropriate, but reality is she negotiates with nobody, she wins they lose every time!
Paul – alias “55” as in Five five , not fifty five (a significant year). In Italian this is “Cinque Cinque“, sort of has a rhythmic ring to it don’t you think?
Look, I know it’s not that imaginative, but it’s the best I can do, ok.
For future reference and to make sure that you don’t allow kiddies to read this blog as “Il Gruppo” travel , there will be swear words used, there will be blasphemy, there will be reference to bodily functions that aren’t easy to listen to, there will be condescending remarks about fellow travellers (they have a right of response), and there may well be comments about people that some might see as inappropriate ie if somebody does something that classifies them as a ‘f…wit”, then I’ll say it. And I never let the truth get in the way of a good story.
Ciao for now