And so, the momentous 40th day mark was celebrated in style with some single parenting. Malcolm was on call and was at hospital the whole day. My father was at a tennis tournament in Shang Hai and my mother went along as his coach. Feel free to laugh, I did for a long time. And thus, I was on my own. I took the opportunity to knuckle down with our trip planning whilst listening to the wonderful sounds of my children practising their piano. Concentrating whilst trying to ignore the countless stray notes took some doing, but I got there in the end. The goal was to complete my super spreadsheet so that the travelling party of 12 would all be informed of the costs involved and the breakdowns. Having different members partake in varying activities at different didn't make the task any easier, but its done!
Much has happened since I last updated. The cruise line has decided not to visit the Egyptian ports and hence we will now be visiting the Greek island of Crete and the Italian port of Naples instead. Malcolm has found another "special' private tour operator for our visit to Iraklion on Crete. His name is Gregory, and his wife will cook for us. I organised the shore excursion for Naples and opted for the safe option of visiting the Herculaneum, going up Mount Vesuvius and finishing with a tour of Naples itself.
We've mostly decided on what we'd like to see at the various places and worked out which city or transport passes, if any, would be most economically sound. The exception is Florence.
To finish off this post, I am most happy to report that the Disney Store in Bologna is only about 200m away from our hotel. It is also conveniently located next to the Zara store...