Our family has been traveling in Europe since July 14. We arrived in Rome, rented a car and drove immediately to our villa outside of Florence in Mercatale San Casciano Val di Pesa. It was an excellent location for us and we had a wonderful time. We swam tons, had rather toasty hot weather, swam some more, ate food, drank wine, went on a variety of adventures and spent one week with a French family as our neighbors in the villa. We had a nice time with them and ate our final meal in Italy with them. We had a rather early morning start, 3 am, to drive from Mercatale to Rome. It was a three hour drive and our flight to Paris was leaving Rome at 8 am. We arrived in Paris only to discover that the fellow who was suppose to open our rental apartment for us just didn’t bother to show up. The owner put us up in a hotel for a night, just around the corner from the apartment. The next day we were able to get into our apartment. Just a slight twist – it is good and helpful to have a flexible personality and disposition while traveling. The apartment worked out really well. It was close to the Jardin du Luxembourg and we wandered through there quite often as well as Becca and Nate loved playing on the playground there in the park. We went to the L’Ouvre (Becca likes to say hi to Mona), Musee D’0rsay, L’Orangerie, walked along the Champs D’Elysees, climbed the Arc de Triomphe, ate lots of yummy meals and had a good time. We then ventured over to Nottingham, England to visit our good friends The Grettons. Cathy and I took off for a few nights and went up into the Yorkshire Dales and Moors. Bethany, Hannah and Ollie went down to Somerset to attend a ‘Soul Survivor Youth Camp.’Dave, Becca and Nate headed home earlier, via London and ended up visiting with Dave’s parents as they were traveling about in Europe as well. Cathy and I drove down to her parents place in Poole and met up with Bethany, Ollie and Hannah. We’ve just heard about the hullabaloo going on at Heathrow so we now can’t take any books, ipods, magazines, drinks etc on our flight home as Heathrow is on a high red alert warning.