Thursday, May 6, 2010

Ashes, Ashes...

So if you've been reading you know I recently returned from Europe. I so want to get picures & stories posted but I only took 4400 pictures! So while I'm sorting through those I thought I'd give you a brief background.

The plan was 2 weeks. First week in England & the second in Italy. However, God must have had other plans because the day we were supposed to fly out of London (for Naples) the volcano in Iceland erupted and grounded all flights in the UK. Well not only did this cause some lodging issues & expensive alternate plans...but, in case you missed geography, Great Britain is an island :-)

Yes its fairly close to mainland Europe, but you still can't just rent a car and get out of the country. So thinking that the volcano may not close airspace for more than a couple days we decided to make the best of being stranded & drove up to Scotland (Although we didn't think twice about driving 350 miles for 2 days the guy at the rental car company thought we were crazy :) "That's a long ways girls! It'll take you a couple days just to get there!") Another family we talked to in London felt the same way...they don't drive longer than 3 hours in a day. To them that is a LONG trip, so I guess on their standards we are pretty crazy, but it wasn't too bad for us used to driving between Wenatchee & Boise for the weekend!

Well returning to London 2 days later planes still weren't flying...and we are, mind you, still operating on sporadic, expensive pay phones & very rare internet cafes! Makes coordinating transportation and lodging tricky! Thankfully our families in the states helped alot & spent hours on hold with our airlines trying to get our flights re-booked. We decided on Tuesday that it could be awhile before planes were flying again & we might as well get headed in the direction we wanted to go...

We rented a car to Dover (yes they really are white cliffs :) and hopped on a ferry to cross the English Chanel. We then rented a car in France & drove to the border of France & Germany where my aunts friend picked us up. (They are very reluctant to let you take a rental car across country borders & it gets ridiculously expensive!) So we spent a day in Germany with their family and then drove through Switzerland down to Venice. We went literally right through (miles of tunnels) the Swiss Alps! Gorgeous!

So then we spent the night in Venice, my favorite Italian city. And drove to Rome the next day & spent 2 days there before finally arriving in Naples at my aunts home. The original destination planned :) We pulled into Naples on Saturday the 24th. A week after we were supposed to fly there and the day we were originally scheduled to fly home. But because of the airline fiasco our flights were rescheduled for Wednesday...

So we ended up with 4 days tacked onto our European adventure! And got to experience much more of Europe than I planned. It was amazing! What a place to be stranded!

We had just a 'little' bit of time in the car, so to keep us from going delusional we wrote a song about our the tune of "This is the song that never ends..." Maybe if you beg I'll post that for you to laugh along with :)

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