The last couple of weeks have been a haze of packing, organizing, scheduling, and stress, but we've survived and are now ostensibly homeless, wandering through Europe (sounds romantic, eh?) But let's go back a few days and start from there.
Last Thursday was possibly one of the single most stressful and downright worst days I've had in a long time, possibly ever. Bleh. I'd had to reschedule the movers to Tuesday (requiring an additional night's stay in a hotel) because the ONLY time the inspector (hired to see what damage and chaos we've caused to our flat) could come was 11am on Thursday, the day before we were leaving the country. But the only time I could get a cleaner in was 9am on Thursday, so the flat was still a complete disaster when the inspector went through the flat with her clipboard of doom in-hand, pointing out each and every scuff mark, nick, bit of dust, and even pointed out to the cleaner how many things she's missed in her cleaning. So it'd turned out the cleaner I'd hired was good at wiping down surfaces, but not actually getting anything clean! She had to redo one bathroom 3 times, after I wound up re-doing the other bathroom after she'd cleaned it twice. I expressed my opinions to the cleaning company about what to do with her, but eventually they just told me that I had to follow her around the flat pointing out every single thing I wasn't happy with... it wasn't something I enjoyed (for those of you who think I actually would!!). It was like a scene from Mommy Dearest combined with the worst Martha Stewart-esque moments I've ever had.
So rather than being able to spend the day doing last-minute work I needed to get done, Hank and I were scrubbing walls. Then I realized the power charger that I was using to charge literally every single bit of electronic equipment I was taking on the trip with us wasn't working, so I needed to come up with 5 separate chargers. Then, when trying to find out where I could get one of the last chargers late in the evening, my laptop crashed! It was definitely a last-straw to my nerves... they crashed about as quickly as my hard drive. But really, from there it could only get better!! (Thankfully both hard drive & sanity are still operational.)
We met friends that evening at the greatest Tiki bar in London, had good drinks, good food, more good drinks, some drinks on fire... Despite it being a sad occasion on which we had to say farewell to lots of good friends, it was at least a lot of fun doing so.
The next morning, at a shiny 5am wake-up call, we flew to Florence. Right now Hank and I are in Venice, having spent our previous 3 days in Florence. We're quickly becoming experts on gelatto, pictures of the Virgin Mary (just ask us about plasticity of forms in renaissance painting!), and tragically expensive shoes (only tragic because we can't see spending that many Euros on them, but DAMN are they hot!).