Last Two Days. Ciao Ciao!

July 29 was Owen’s 18th birthday, and the day before we left. I was determined to make it fun for him since his last eight birthdays have been spent packing and cleaning, or flying. So I took the boys to the lake again, came back home and packed up the boxes, went back an hour later to pick them up (spent two hours just driving!), came back and brought the boxes to the storage area, and the car to the rental place. The damage from the accident was only $272, and even at that, I believe my credit card will be reimbursing me. We had our birthday gift-opening ritual on the balcony with drinks and cheese and crackers, then left for our final dinner at our favorite place, The Garden of the Duck. The host was fantastic as always. Plus, ALL the students were there!  The boys had steak with Himalayan salt, a favorite of Owen’s. 

The Garden of the Duck

Argentinian steak

...with Himalayan salt. This year it came in a grinder and it was better because you didn't get a big chunk of salt.

Ever the teacher! 

Owen's cake.

And in the morning we woke up for the last time in Italy until next year. It's the day we get up at 6 am and walk through the streets of Viterbo dragging our suitcases along the cobblestones making a holy racket, but something inside me feels happy in a vengeful way because of the horrific sounds we’ve been waking up to all month. The bus brought us to Fiumicino, which was a bit unpleasant because we had to wait so very long… 3 1/2 hours… sitting on the floor… waiting for our gate to be posted. This, after a one-hour wait for our check-in line to open up. That, after a half hour trying to find our check-in line. And they could not seat us together even though I did everything the travel agent told me to do to arrange that. 

Finally we boarded, flew to Paris, boarded the next plane, and got home at 6:15 to be greeted by Adam’s parents and Henry!

Playing cards at the Paris airport.

A woman playing the piano they have set up at the airport for anyone who knows how to play (or not, for that matter!), and a trumpeter joined in with his piccolo trumpet. He/they were amazing! What a treat. It brought everyone together, smiling.