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-   -   Our Hurry Up and Go Vacation: how inexperienced travelers booked a 3-week trip to London, Paris, Rome, and Venice for 2 adults and 2 teenagers starting only 2 ˝ weeks before departure… (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/our-hurry-up-and-go-vacation-how-inexperienced-travelers-booked-a-3-week-trip-to-london-paris-rome-and-venice-for-2-adults-and-2-teenagers-starting-only-2-weeks-before-departure-634756/)

mclaurie Jul 29th, 2006 08:01 AM

In the immortal words of me...&quot;WOW <i>and</i> holy moses&quot;
I came upon your trip report quite by accident and can't remember when I've enjoyed myself so much on someone else's trip. :-D

&quot;Europe as a tropical destination.&quot;
8-)
&quot;Bastille Day fireworks as we went through Dijon and other towns along the route...&quot; ((^))
&quot;the festival of Redentore... oh la la&quot;((R))
&quot;I detect a pattern here…&quot; :-?
&quot;Yeah. Very interesting. But I really just want to know how to tell what flavors the gelati are!” :-d

jules4je7 Jul 29th, 2006 08:08 AM

I've spent the past hour reading this and after having been in London, Paris and Rome in 2003 and 2005 -- feel like I'm revisiting my top three cities all over again. Thank you so much, and please, do continue.

Jules

vcl Jul 29th, 2006 08:16 AM

You are making your discoveries our discoveries. What a wonderful gift you are giving us.

Thanks so much.

pittpurple Jul 29th, 2006 08:20 AM

Thanks for this - it's awesome! And what a great life lesson - my mom and I have been talking about going to Italy for years, but things keep getting in the way. I'm sending this to her and am going to remember that we could plan something last minute too!!

Can't wait to hear the rest...

olive_oil Jul 29th, 2006 08:59 AM

I love this report! Thanks for posting it. Now I have it bookmarked so I can remind myself of the rules at any time.

annhig Jul 29th, 2006 09:11 AM

Bit late now, but someone suggested putting into your mobile a contact number for the person meeting you at your apartment - saves wandering around looking hopelessly for the apartment. alternatively, some agencies have an airport collection service -it's a bit pricey but we found it was worth it to avoid hassle at the beginning of the holiday.

kerouac Jul 29th, 2006 10:12 AM

Excellent report. However, having never had to plan for a family and being an airline employee, I have made more than one spontaneous travel choices in my life. Try to imagine flying from Paris to Rome one morning to spend the day there while being deathly ill (okay: just the flu) in order to wait for an Ethiopian Airlines flight at 1:15 a.m. to go to Addis Ababa. After not getting on the flight standby, flying back to Paris at 6:30 a.m. (miraculously cured of the flu during the night!) and seeing that I had a Pakistan Airlines ticket in stock for Paris-New York, I went home from CDG, modified my baggage slightly, and spent the next week in NYC.

Birdie Jul 29th, 2006 10:58 AM

I am a W&amp;M alum too and have found your post invaluble. We leave for London in 3 weeks with our two teens and I'm up to my eyeballs in travel plans and details. What would we do without Travel Talk?

Saraho Jul 29th, 2006 11:30 AM

I enjoyed your trip report- I'm at the beginning of planning a trip to Venice, Tuscany/Umbria and Rome for us and our 17 year old granddaughter and maybe some other family members.

marigross Jul 29th, 2006 12:06 PM

WOW-impressive. I have found that Rule #1 can be the most important in enjoying a vacation...

LoveItaly Jul 29th, 2006 01:02 PM

NorCalif, I too am sooooo enjoying your trip report. I love long trip reports where the various family members are described and discussed, and how problems and stresses are overcome and reactions to various places and activities are talked about. I feel like I am travelling along with your family.

And the story of you DD and the Roman bus driver is precious!!

More please...

Croque_Madame Jul 29th, 2006 02:17 PM

What a wonderfully entertaining trip report! I so admire your resourcefullness in planning such a trip. Congratulations on a job well done!

Your descriptions are so vivid, I can immediately visualize your family wandering the streets in search of your apartment, suitcases trundling behind. How you looked and felt. The confusion, the determination, and finally, the reward!

Thanks so much for taking us along with you!

NorCalif Jul 29th, 2006 04:00 PM

You have all been so kind. I continue to be amazed at the helpfulness and encouragement of people on this Board. Thank you all so much for your comments – I’ve read and enjoyed them all.

I wanted to respond to a couple of you that asked specific questions:

RBFK50: Interesting question, but I never considered a travel agent. I am just a total do-it-yourselfer I guess (OK, a control freak). And I actually enjoyed a lot of the research process – just didn’t have enough time to do it right.

HAPPYCHEESEHEAD: No, I’m not a writer (although I’d love to play one on TV). I actually am a software engineer. I think I’m enjoying the opportunity to use the verbal side of my head!

Oh – and I have to set the record straight about rule #1 – it didn’t originate with me but was a quote I learned in college. I just googled it to see who originally said it and interestingly enough the first several sites that had the quote were all software design sites – so I must have heard it in some computer science class of all places. But as best I can figure it is a slight re-wording of an observation of Voltaire’s. He certainly deserves the credit for it, not me!

Thanks again to everyone and best to you all. I look forward to continuing the trip report soon …

Hagan Jul 29th, 2006 06:59 PM

Loving every word of your report! Am anxious to hear what you thought of your Rome apartment, as it was on our short list. I e-mailed sleepinitaly to ask about the bed/sleeping configuration, and to question if there was seating for 4 at a table, but got no response. So I reserved a different one (same agency) in Trastevere. I'm sure I could change it, since there's plenty of time, so I'd love to hear your thoughts. Thanks.

Lostmymind Jul 29th, 2006 07:43 PM

I am so loving this, great writing style please keep it coming!

i_am_kane Jul 29th, 2006 08:01 PM

It's late and I should be in bed, but your report was so fascinating, I decided to loose some sleep over it.

Great report.

nnolen Jul 29th, 2006 08:09 PM

This trip report is hysterical. Your writing style is great - reminds me a little bit of Helen Fielding. V.G. Continue on.

laartista Jul 29th, 2006 08:46 PM

Oh, this is a fun report. Love the rules, so good, and so true. I'm jotting those down for future reference. Keep it coming.

tuscanlifeedit Jul 29th, 2006 09:29 PM

One more enthusiastic fan. I've just spent the last half hour with you and your family. Enjoying this very much; thanks!

Cameron Jul 29th, 2006 09:47 PM

Reading your trip report is such a pleasure! Thank you!


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