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The Flight Back to NZ

sunny 24 °C

Thank heavens for travel insurance - definitely wouldn't travel overseas without it.

SCTI flew us both home Emirates Business Class - can't speak too highly of Emirates, they looked after us very well indeed. Wish we could fly business class all the time!

So back home, and have had an operation to pin and plate the fracture (19th February). Almost back on my on two legs again now (1st May), just waiting on the final check in two weeks from the surgeon. Physio is really happy with progress so far.
Now planning our next trip - September this year. Two weeks in a villa in Tuscany with a group of friends. So glad we are going again - we are going to take a couple of extra weeks to walk in the Dolomites and visit Bavaria (which we missed this trip).

Posted by EMTHOMSON 22:54 Archived in New Zealand Comments (0)

Day 24 - 26

Clinic Safari


JT has had a few of great days skiing with Howard Symes (from Wellington). They did the Marmolada Glacier yesterday, having done the Sella Ronda the day before (this is a 40km trip)
Austin and Sandra have headed back to join the tour in Cortina – and it sounds like they are having a good time skiing again – albeit a bit cautiously.
Lots of snow during the night – winter fairyland here again, blue skies forecast for the afternoon. Taxi shuttle picked JT and I up for the drive to La Villa to the clinic there (as arranged by the travel insurance). This is a trip of about 20mins (approx. 14kms) up over the Passo Campolongo. Stunning scenery.
Check up at the clinic was quick, but they were concerned that I’d only had 4 days of treatment for possible thrombosis so arranged an ultrasound…..in Bolzano, about 100kms away, 1 ½ hrs by taxi.
So another trip in the taxi van (Mercedes Benz this time, only 4 weeks old!). Lovely trip through the valleys, and then into the old town section of Bolzano. Complete with cobbled streets and pastel buildings.
Uneventful session at the ultrasound (no sign of any problems thankfully), a quick late lunch and then back to La Villa!!!!! So relieved that there are no complications at this stage. I’m now all documented as okay to fly back to NZ – yahoo. Just have to wait on the travel insurance company to come through on the flights.

Posted by EMTHOMSON 13:33 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

Day 22-23


semi-overcast 3 °C

So the meal prepared by Alex was venison ragù served over linguine, followed by tiramisu. It was a great last night for us with the rest of the tour.
JT was very popular with one of the tour especially. Austin had had an minor tumble on the last run down to the hotel, but when he got in he realised he’d lost his iPhone! So he walked back to the lift to see if anyone had handed it in. He crossed paths with JT, who had helped him up after the tumble, and JT offered to ride back up and check the slope. Well, to cut a long story short, after a bit of scrabbling around – JT managed to uncover the phone!!!!!! Don’t know what the odds where of that – but reckon JT should buy a lotto ticket. Austin was soooo thrilled, two bottles of red wine duly appeared! And I’m now sporting some lovely red toe nails courtesy of Sandra (Austin’s wife). The tour left yesterday for the safari leg and it was very sad to say goodbye to everyone.
Last night (Saturday), Patsy (our ex-pat friend) and Mario her ski guide husband, picked us up and took us out for a meal. They had invited another Kiwi who’d been on tour last week with Mario.
So this man – Howard – turned out to be from Wellington! He had run a business there that he’d just sold (sound familiar?). So we got talking, and discovered he lived in Brooklyn, to which JT says – what street? Turns out Howard has lived at 5 Conaught Tce since 1998 – the house that Mollie and George (JT’s parents) had lived in! How’s that for a small world!
Howard had researched the previous owners and knew that a vet, then an accountant, then a lawyer had owned the property before him!
JT and Howard are off skiing today – and it’s snowing again too, everyone is happy to see more snow.

Unfortunately Austin and Sandra have had to stay back for a couple of days too, as Austin did strain his knee in the tumble – so I have some company for a couple of days!

Posted by EMTHOMSON 01:47 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

Day 19-21

Arabba, Italy

sunny -2 °C

It’s been snowing – everyone is very excited as it’s the first fresh snow since around the 12th January! The countryside has changed and the last two days have been what the locals call “blue and white” days! Equates to our bluebird days in NZ.
An NZ expat local Patsy has been a godsend to me, delivering wool and knitting needles (scarf underway), a DVD player and DVD’s – then spending some time each day just chatting with me in-between her busy work day.
So the tour has been exploring around Arabba – both the slopes and the various restaurants on piste. The lunches have sounded amazing and so reasonably priced compared to the slopes in NZ. Pasta, pizza, full menu service, great house wines, gluehwein! And that follows on from the breakfasts here at the hotel (cereal, yoghurt, fruit, cold meats, cheese, bread, eggs any way, coffee/tea/juice, pastries and strudel).
Last night the tour packed into two vans and headed down the road about 5 mins to a restaurant in a 1890’s fort. It was built by Prince Wilhelm around 1897 during the Italy-Austrian war. Bombed during WW1, but rebuild by the locals and now a restaurant. Wonderfully entertaining waiter who coped beautifully with the Kiwi-Aussie humour. A bit like the Faulty Towers character Emmanuel!
More sunshine today – think everyone will be tired tonight. The tour guides are putting on a dinner in the hotel for us. Apparently Alex is a chef when he’s not skiing! Did wonder how they cope when there’s no snow. More on this one later.

Posted by EMTHOMSON 01:41 Archived in Italy Comments (2)

Day 17-18


overcast 5 °C
View JT's 60th Anniversary World Tour on EMTHOMSON's travel map.

Well, that certainly wasn’t how I’d thought we’d spend the day! Started out with a change of plan due to wind closing the Marmolada Glacier, bummer. But the guides decided we could do some of the Sella Ronda, so off we went. We split into two groups to make it a bit easier on the lifts, and headed up to Porto Vescovo via a couple of lifts and then the cable car. Boy they pack you in like sardines!
So we’d done 4 lifts and were on the 4th run of the day when calamity struck……..a moment of inattention on the last bit of the run into the lift and I was down! And oh boy did it hurt – so not the ACL at least. After a banana boat ride (courtesy of the poilezi) and an ambulance ride (45kms to the nearest hospital down some incredible roads) to hospital where I was x-rayed – and yes I’ve fractured the tibial plateau on my right leg (Sarah’s terminology, it’s even worse in Italian).
Very impressed with the emergency staff here, both on field and in town, feel very well looked after. Now just have to wait a bit to sort out our next steps – for me it won’t be fast! I’ve never broken a bone before and never used crutches! All new learning experiences.
So today for me is rest with my leg up (no weight bearing on that leg for 40 days), and reading. JT’s been great – but I’ve sent him off to ski today – the glacier is open and is apparently fantastic. I’ve told him to take lots of photos.

Posted by EMTHOMSON 01:47 Archived in Italy Comments (2)

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