The memorial on Saturday went really well; I was pleased with it, and I'm also glad it's done. Now I can start stressing out - I mean thinking about - the Italy trip. I plotted out a rough itinerary today of how I'll spend the six weeks, and it now feels like it's a pathetically short trip. I'm wanting to hit several of the "big" cities in Italy for research purposes, but it means being away from our home base in Milan roughly half the time. Which still means about three weeks in Milan, but it'll end up being a few days here and a few days there rather than three solid weeks. I'm preparing for this to be the opposite of a relaxing trip.
Still, I'm not complaining - it's six friggin' weeks in Italy, forgodsakes. And, if things go according to plan [editor's note - when do things ever go according to plan?!?] I'll be able to re-visit some cities I've seen and loved before and also add a few new ones to the mix. I'm excited about both prospects.
It's funny, because I have a fondness for Rome just based on writing and reading about it, but my actual trip there in 2001 wasn't particularly wonderful. It was toward the end of the whole vacation, I was tired, and after the relative calm of Florence, Rome was a bit of a shock to the system. I'm looking forward to seeing it again with different eyes. Other places I'm hoping to see include Florence and Siena (both of which I know and love), and Lucca and Assisi (neither of which I've ever been to). I've got a day set aside to visit Pompeii and Herculaneum, too, so I'm crossing my fingers that works out. Really, I go back and forth between being giddy with anticipation and feeling bogged down by all there is to do on this trip. But in the end, I'll do what I can, and I won't knock myself out over it. Worst case scenario is that I need another trip. Poor me.
I'm planning to keep up with this blog during the trip, however sporadically, as well as the Italy Logue (link in the upper right hand corner, too) - the latter will get more attention, because this is a work trip and that's what they're sending me over there to do, but I imagine I'll pop in here now and again as well.
So, the countdown begins - six days until departure. Egads.