The flight back to the US from Rome was uneventful and everything went smoothly. We even got some sleep in between movies and feedings.
When we arrived in Florida (12 February), we still had two weeks or so of Florida-winter weather. High temperatures in the 50-60° F (10-15°C) range were colder than we wanted, but things quickly returned to normal with highs often above 86°F (30°C).
It was interesting to think about our being here as a vacation, because it did and didn’t feel like being home. Besides it was sort of a working vacation.
When we planned our return, six weeks seemed like plenty of time to take care of everything before we started traveling again. Well, we have been very busy and our departure date of March 24 is quickly approaching. We’ve been to our doctors for annual check-ups, then the dentist, and eye doctor. We ordered new glasses, replaced some of our luggage, shoes and other items worn heavily this last year. Tax statements have been sent to our accountant, and now we have to make payment arrangements as we will come up a little short this year. We accomplished the necessary tasks, but it was the fun stuff and visits that we had to put off.
Family members were highest on the list, and we got by to see Gene, Jeannie’s dad, on several occasions. We did manage to visit several friends, but there are so many others we wanted to connect with. Those we haven’t visited we’ll have to see after this next phase of travel.
So, our plan is to return to France, and while there our lives will be enriched by visits of three sets of friends. It will be great to share Lyon with them; some have never visited the city, and others for whom it will be a first visit to Europe.
Our good friend Barb has again sheltered us during this stay. She and her three cats have made us feel at home (well maybe not Molly and Chessie). She even offered to allow us to stay with her again when we return in November. But we decided we will get our own place when we next return to the US. So we booked a condo in New Smyrna Beach from mid-November thru January. We decided that we would like to have a home base booked in advance, and it will be comforting to know we have a home picked out before we return.
If you’d like to know where we’ll going next, we will soon post our Phase 2 plans. And if you’ve been wondering how the budget is working out, I’ll be working on metrics with charts and graphs, and maybe my favorite, a pivot table. I do enjoy Excel and Quicken!! Stay tuned…