Personally Speaking ~Are We There Yet?

As a child we would pose this question to my dear Dad over and over as we drove down the highway on family trips with all seven of us kids in tow, “Are we there yet?”  Being a patient man he would answer it the first few hours and then ignore it the rest of the way.  We kids must have realized if the car hadn’t stopped yet, we must not be there!

Well, I feel like a kid again as Marie and I are anxiously awaiting to leave on our Italian adventure!  I’m not bugging her (yet) by asking if we’re there yet (she will hear that once or twice in the plane for sure), but I do send her the ticker count regularly as we count down the days until take off!

I understand and appreciate why people choose to go through a travel agent or go with a tour, but  we chose to do it all on our own and it’s been a wonderful journey thus far and we haven’t even left yet!  Through hours and hours of researching everything from cities, towns, villages, transportation, lodging, sites to see, car rental, insurances,  you name it…we have learned so much already about this beautiful country we are about to set foot in and have tailored our trip exactly to our desires!   It’s also been a plus to hear from those on this site who have gone there before us and have offered their valuable insight.


Oh dear…Jane should have listened to Marie when she said the deal sounded too good to be true!!




~~ Jane~~


Oh No!  Now I’m worried!  Jane made all our overnight accommodations!


By-the-way, did Jane tell you we were renting a car in Sicily?


No Jane, we’re not there yet!




45 thoughts on “Personally Speaking ~Are We There Yet?”

  1. Jane , made ​​me laugh a lot what you wrote .
    I understand that it’s hard to choose the steps to do it …………………but
    we must pass along a beautiful day where you tell me that you met Ignazio and which has given you many hugs ( maybe , hopefully ) .
    Aspect of knowing your final itinerary because it continues to change .
    You saw that Brescia offers beautiful possibilities .
    See you soon!!!

    1. Daniela, I am so looking forward to spending a day with you!! Hope Marie’s little dictionary will get us through otherwise, are you good at charades? 🙂

  2. Jane a fun post!! You two will have a fantastic time!!! Don’t forget to keep us updated!!! You are going to Montepagono, Marsala , & Naro aren’t you!!! Important locations to visit!!!

  3. Jane, you are so funny. I’m so excited for both of you. When is this taking place? I was in Italy long ago (2009) but it was during a Mediterranean Cruise. I would go back in a heartbeat.
    We stopped in Pompeii, Rome, Florence, Naples, Venice and my favorite, Amalfi. We were able to go inside the Vatican. It was a trip of a lifetime. I can’t wait to read how you guys are preparing for your journey. Make sure you take lots of pictures for sharing.

    1. Prese, we are going mid-October. Should be beautiful weather, but fewer hours of sun light. I’m thrilled to be going everywhere, especially the towns of the three guys, Assisi and the Cinque Terre. My main job will be to take pictures and keep my partner out of trouble! LOL

      1. Jane , I’m sorry but where is over Venice, if I am not mistaken in the first version was .

      2. As Marie said “good luck with that” I bet that if she does land in jail, that Daniela would be happy to take her place! So don’t worry Jane you would still have a traveling companion,and Marie would be well taken care of with her Italian police officers( that all look like Ignazio) and her three meals a day!

    2. Wow what a long journey you’ve done , you’ve seen some beautiful city . Me too Amalfi enjoyed , really the Amalfi Coast with its breathtaking views and its beautiful ceramics .

  4. Jane, I am so happy for you two….Marie and Jane in Italy together? Italy will never be the same! Can hardly wait for the report!! Know that many of us will be with you in spirit!!♡♡♡Dot in Texas!

  5. Jane, I bet there is only one car repair shop in Naro. Maybe you could fake a need and see Gaetano and maybe Piero. I would die if it were me. I met a pizza guy here who lived one mile from Ignazio’s sister’s pizza shop. in Marsala. He has Il Volo photos all over his place. I felt right at home. Be sure to take lots of photos for all of us crying ’cause we are left behind. Boo Hoo Joanie G

  6. Marie and Jane surely it will be great adventure for you, so enjoy it to the fullest and have a safe travelling. I wish you all the best ! 🙂
    Italian article about Djokovič event:
    Wiwibloggs article WHAT ARE THE BEST OPERATIC EUROVISION ENTRIES OF THE PAST 10 YEARS? ( Il Volo is on first place 🙂 )
    Yesterday boys were in Como at Casta Diva Resort & SPA ( The first luxury eco-friendly resort on Lake Como. 73 uniquely appointed rooms plus 2 private villas, Italian restaurant and an exclusive SPA concept.) to realize an interview for Mediaset, along with Gabriele Parpiglia.

  7. You two are so funny !! Can’t wait to hear about your trip when you get back ! Or will you have time to send us little snippets of daily life in Il Volo land?

  8. Oh boy, You two are headed for one A-MAZING adventure. Just those photos of your accommodations alone is enough to make me wince, I mean smile! SMILE! Yes, thats it! When is your date of departure? I want to make sure a get in a good Novena for you two rascals. Acquaint yourself with the Italian money before you go, that was one of my mistakes. Oh yeah another trick. Take along your worst underwear, wear ir, then throw it away! makes your suitcase that much lighter as you go,….well thats the theory , I think….

    1. That is too funny on the throw away underwear! But you know, I have close friends who travel quite often and that is exactly what they do! But make sure you have enough to get you home!!

  9. Jane & Marie you are going to have the most memorable trip of a lifetime! I have been fortunate to have visited Italy a number of times but there is never enough time to see all of the most historic & picturesque towns in Italy. Of course the highlight is the hometowns of our handsome guys! Be diligent & safe travels!

  10. Marie and Jane surely it will be great adventure for you, so enjoy it to the fullest and have a safe travelling.I wish you all the best ! 🙂

    1. Thanks Allene, we have modified our plans at least 4 times. It took a while to figure out that we can’t see all of Italy in just 16 days. It hurts when we have to drop another city off our list. We just lost Pompeii. Aakkk!

  11. app_header_v3
    Why are Italians such crazy drivers?

    Published: 26 Mar 2015 10:30 GMT+01:00
    Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

    “The Italians may have given the world Ferrari, but surveys rate them as some of Europe’s scariest drivers. The problem? A blatant disregard for the rules, the locals tell us.

    They switch lanes hastily, blast their horns, stop for a chat with other drivers, and anything goes when it comes to parking.

    Their recklessness makes fellow Europeans fume: 38 percent of the 10,000 questioned in a recent survey by the French motorway operator, Vinci, described Italians as dangerous drivers.

    And Italians themselves didn’t argue with that depiction, with 58 percent of them agreeing.

    At peak times, driving in Italy can be absolute bedlam. Some insight can be gleaned from the video below, filmed in Rome’s Piazza Venezia, in 2009:”

    I walked during our tour in Germany. A few trips on the Autobahn helped me stick to my decision.
    What about getting some helmets with Il Volo logo.

    1. You’re right , I would never drive in traffic to the south of Rome , and often the rules are not observed at most

      1. Marie does not scare you , I spoke of the large cities such Rome or Naples , but the highways are beautiful and small towns such Marsala or Naro are simpler , attentive to the streets as Laura says some are really narrow …… maybe in Naro is an opportunity to really call the workshop of Gaetano …. ah ah ah

  12. Marie, I”m so happy for you girls. Wish I could go with you, Hope you have all your hotel reservations. On my second trip there, we drove, started from Paris (great trip) and had to sleep one night on the beach on the Italian Riviera! They were dancing at night and when we got up the fishermen were there! and that was just the beginning. Anyway, I know you will have a wonderful time and can’t wait to hear about it.

  13. There is a funny picture of a tourist’s car that got totally wedged in a narrow street in Naro which came to mind when reading that you & Marie may rent a car in SicilyI I don’t subscribe to Facebook, but I found a little picture of the incident on “IL Volo Naro Fan Club a.c.r. Photos| Facebook.” ( a ways down, under the picture of Piero laying on a hammock – on the far right on the lines of photos). I remember seeing a bigger picture of it on their Twitter fan-site earlier this year. It made me laugh, but also felt mortified as their text announced that this is what can happen when American tourists try to drive around Naro! OMG; so humiliating. I still wonder how they got the car out of that predicament & what it cost the driver (besides total embarrassment) ! Really enjoyed your post, Jane. I think your trip is going to be a hoot with Marie there! Don’t forget to bring tissue packets in your shoulder-bags & wear flat shoes. If you find yourselves in need of a public lavatory, duck into a bar or hotel & ask to use theirs, otherwise you might need those tissue packets!

  14. One more thing, Jane & Marie, Maybe you already know this, but have a COLOR-copy of your passports, should they get lost. Wishing you a wonderful trip & memories!

  15. Hope the trip is amazing & you have a wonderful time.. Give Ignazio a big hug and kiss from me.. 🙂

  16. Can I add a few soothing words of encouragement?

    Here in England, we drive on the left hand side and the driver’s seat is on the right of the car. In Italy and the USA, you drive on the right side and the driver sits on the left. I have rented cars in both countries and have driven in cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego; as well as Milan, Bologna and Rome. I have also rented cars in Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Germany and Greece. In all of those countries, they drive on the right, also.

    I never had the sightest problem. You need to pay atttention to the road signs just as you would if you were driving in your home town or state. Make sure you know the signs for “no entry” (divieto di accesso — literally “access forbidden”) and “one way” (senso unico, the meaning of which is a bit too close to “One Direction only”, for my liking!). Signal early and never make a sudden change of lane or turn. If you have to stop, the car behind will never crash into you. If you don’t crash into the one in front, either, you will never have an accident.

    Driving on the autostrada (freeway) is the same as anywhere else. Driving in town just requires the same level of attention as at home. If your rental car has a “satnav”, make sure that it is programmed in English.

    Italy is a wonderful country (I have my wife’s permission to say so) and you will have the time of your lives. Enjoy every minute! Buon viaggio e buon divertimento!

      1. Having been Marie’s “travel buddy” for 3 weeks (on holiday from South Africa) in March, I can confidently confirm that she is a pretty good and save driver! The ultimate was a 9 hour trip from New York back to Ohio (her home town) in one day and all the way enjoying ourselves singing along with Il Volo, it was great!
        Jane, I can assure you that you will have an awesome time in Marie’s company. Hope you have a meravigliosa time!

  17. Fantastico Jane and Marie !!!! You are following in the Granny Groupies footsteps !! Seeing the boys towns where they grew up and still live is an amazing experience !!! Even if you don’t get to see them –and I hope you do !! –you’ll still be walking down the same streets they have walked down all their lives !!! And in Marsala you will definitely get to visit with Nina in the Pizzeria !! Where else are you going ?? How long will you be in that magnificent country !! Are you driving yourselves around ?? If you are all I have to say is 😱 !! No matter what you will without a doubt come home with beautiful memories that you will cherish forever !!!

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