Sunday, 4 September 2016

Next stop: Italy!

Well, on Monday, the 8th of August, we attempted to fly to Torino (or Turin if you like that better).  We never made it!  It wasn't for trying, though...

What happened was, that we were at Stansted airport early enough, but were taken by surprise to discover how busy it was.  I'd been there before and never seen, nor expected, such chaos.  And, having checked in on line, all we needed to do was go to the bag drop and get our luggage checked in. But so did everybody else!!!  As it was, we had a number of people in front of us who had problems with their overweight suitcases and only one person in attendance. It took forever to get through and when it was our turn the bag drop had closed for our flight. By 3 minutes!!!  No amount of help and talk did get us on our flight so all we could do was to go to the help desk where we were re-scheduled on a flight to Milano, for a hefty fee: £100 on top of our much cheaper flight!

What can you do?  As we had no choice and nowhere to stay for another night we choose to go to Milano instead and catch a train or bus from there to Torino.  This was not without problems either, because even though we could get to Torino by bus and from there to Trofarello by train, we still had another problem to overcome: we had no keys to the apartment!

Upon arrival at Torino we were supposed to text Erica's mother or sister on their mobile phone to let them know when we would arrive at Trofarello and they would drop us of at the apartment and let us in. With no time to ring from Torino we decided to do so from the railway station upon our arrival, but...  neither of us had access to internet and the numbers given to us required the country code for Italy, which subsequently we couldn't look up.  Not being able to speak a word of Italian didn't quite help us either.

I knew the way to the apartment and it was to be only a 7 minute walk, so we took hold of our suitcases (on wheels!) and started walking (in the heat of the day).  I hoped that on the way I would think of a solution, which came to me eventually.  I remembered that somewhere I had a typed sheet of paper with addresses and phone numbers and what not and among those numbers I had Stefano's mobile number with the country code included.  Then it was just a matter of texting mum and sister and mum was there in a flash (ah well, 20 minutes) to open the door and show us the house and some nice welcoming treats on the table.  She also needed to show us where Stefano and Erica's car was parked, and since she didn't speak English we went with her.  It was only a few streets behind the block, so I could remember for when we needed the car.  That was it.  We could finally settle in!

The unit in Trofarello


Top floor on the right
Dianne cooking pasta (what else?) ;-)

The market place around the corner

More to follow....

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