Chance Encounter

After 10 days in the UK, we are back in our Emma. We arrive in the middle of the night to a sharp frost, much colder than it was in Wales where we’d spent the previous weekend at the Druidstone Hotel, where Beth and Angus, the owners, got married. It was a very moving ceremony and so lovely to see their joy in saying yes to each other, in the midst of running the hotel (and their own ceremony!), with two little children in tow and having come through the loss of both of Angus’s parents in the last three years.

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To see more photos of the wedding, click here.

As we arrive too late in Italy to catch a train back to Sesto, we have to get a hire car from Milano Linate airport. Somehow we get lost on the way home, driving round and round in a deserted town called Gallarate in the middle of the night, which reminds me of the time when my first boyfriend Helmut and I were travelling in Italy and tried to find a way out of Milano towards Lago di Como. Somehow the signs seem really good until at some point, there are no signs at all and then you seem to find yourself back where you started, with the same run of roundabouts again…
The next morning, we have to drive back to Linate to return the hire car. As we drive along, trying to avoid getting lost in Gallarate again but not succeeding, somehow this all doesn’t make financial sense: counting train and bus journeys plus hire car costs, maybe we could have just parked our van by the airport – not to mention the time it all takes. There must be another reason for having chosen this way for our return. Anyway, we drop off the car at the airport and take a bus to Milan centre, where we walk around a bit, taking in the sights before heading for the train station to go back home.

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At the station, Frank sees a poster of ‘Mamma Mia’, the West-End Musical for which his nephew Jason’s company Deadline, sets up and takes down the stage all over the world. We give him a ring, and sure enough, he is in Milan, so we arrange to meet for a cuppa. What a lovely coincidence! So that was the reason for all this travelling to and fro with the hire car, now it all makes sense :-)
On the way back home, we get stuck once more in Gallarate, this time on the train. A train has broken down on the line in front of us, giving us time to contemplate the sights of Gallarate train station for about one hour, before the train haltingly shuttles back into motion. Maybe there was something in this town that we had to discover, maybe we missed it in this life. If so, I’m sure it’ll come up again.

Here are a few more photos of Milano and of Sesto Calende .


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