Italy #9

First thing in the morning, Alan and Wendy left to catch their flight from Pisa to Bournemouth. When I walked out to say goodbye to them, I stubbed the middle toe of my left foot against the brick work. OW. PAIN!

Later, we picked up Maria from her house and journeyed into Fabriano in order to return the Golf. When he'd picked it up, Keven had driven away from the Avis without checking the whole car, only to realize later that it was missing a hubcap. We were concerned that we'd be charged for it. But no, the woman behind the counter knew Silvia and talked a long time with Maria. No charge for the hubcap.

But then Maria's car wouldn't start. She called Paolo who came to meet up with us. We walked across the street to buy our train tickets to Rome for the next day; Keven and I would be traveling there together, while everyone else would return to Stansted. Tickets achieved, we went to Fabriano's famous paper making museum and learned all that can be learned in an hour's time about medieval paper-making.

My toe was killing me. When we stopped for lunch, I took off my shoe. BLOODY TOE! It was all bruised and purple and hideous. I'd broken the thing. How was I going to walk around Rome??

At that point we all could've toured downtown Fabriano, which is a well-maintained historic city, but frankly I think we were tired. The heat was tremendous, and we had been going nonstop for most of the week. There's only so much beautiful stuff the brain can take it once. So we returned to Casa Rastia with the sole aim of making better use of the pool. I soaked my foot and read. Dinner was all about making use of what we still had left, which meant eating the food Kev's parents had bought too much of.

Oh, but we did go to the market once again, this time for flip flops. My toe was fine if I didn't have to shove it in a shoe. I thought flip flops might help me limp around Rome better. While there, I used a payphone to call home for the first time. Dad said that mom had been in the hospital for dehydration. Her illness had returned in force on Monday afternoon. Things had gotten so crazy that the girls actually went to stay with my brother and his family for two nights. Nuts! But I'm glad I didn't know any of that through the week. It would've been something to worry about, something I had no control over at all. I felt sorry for Dad though, having to take care of their farm animals, the girls, and a sick wife! Ack!

Tomorrow: the home stretch...Rome, Day One

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