Preface to A Room in Rome: The Italian Connection

Source:, Google Images

Nov. 9, 2010

I have never been to Italy. My husband of six years, Alan, has been several times and wants to go again. Who am I to argue? So I decided to keep a journal, starting now, because of a casual remark that blew me away.

I was busy cleaning up after dinner while Alan searched for hotel rooms for us and the other two couples joining us in May 2011. I was on my way to the den to ask Alan a question & he came out of the den saying, “I can’t find a room in Rome.” I laughed, because here I was doing a mundane chore and Alan was sweating it out in front of the computer looking for a room in Rome.  Bizarre! I was concentrating on the dishes at home while his mind was in Rome!

Alan is our travel agent & tour guide, having been to Italy three or four times, both in the service and with his family when his children were teens and again when his parents celebrated their 50th & 55th wedding anniversaries.  He really could be a tour guide. Alan’s friends, The Hanovers and my friends, The Goldsteins, are joining us.

In the meantime, I think Alan used a ream of paper finding hotels that would accommodate all six of us. I am bemused…not sure that’s the word…but I feel that his task seems so much like a dream, because I never thought I would ever see Rome.  I came from a working class family of five children with a father who worked 12-16 hours a day as an auto mechanic to provide for his family. While my older sister Phyllis married at 18 and didn’t want to go to college, the other four of us did, and my two brothers went on to get a Ph.D. (Paul) & M.D. (Harry). Rosie & I received post-grad degrees well after college on our own budget. My father was always working on scholarship & loan forms.

Alan is not wealthy, but he likes to travel, so he has a special savings account for that purpose. I am not averse to travel. Once I am where we are going, I love it. But getting ready to go and the aftermath of laundry, mail, & jet lag when we get back takes away some of the fun, especially now that airline security means longer waits at the airport.

Anyway, I will keep a journal as things progress and hopefully keep one on the trip, even if I can’t bring the computer because of space and weight.  I inherited my grandson’s old iBook & it is quite heavy. I can always go back to pre-computer time and take a trusty pen & pad. Simple, needs no electricity or batteries and fits inside my purse.

November 21, 2010

I think Alan is on his second ream of paper (Which I will recycle), with files of research for each city in Italy that we are visiting—Rome, Amalfi Coast, Florence and Venice. My friend Rhoda, who along with hubby Kal,  commented on Alan’s extensive research. I told Alan he would make a great travel agent! Plans for our city hops are beginning to seem real, but May is still too far away to start getting excited!

Vacation Interruptus- January 28, 2011

Just back from 8 days in Costa Rica. Best vacation yet with Alan. Can’t imagine Italy being better, but we’ll see!

P.S. I am posting this on June 2nd, my half-birthday. I like to take stock halfway through my year and posting my journal about our travels seems like a good way to kicj off the second half of my year.

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