Iprincess26 Wedding Report

Discussion in 'Just Married - Wedding Reports' started by iPrincess26, Jun 3, 2013.

  1. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    ..............So as a lot of you know we had an amazing meal planned! so in order that everyone could enjoy the food we decided to do the speeches first but before that we had to be announced to the room - so everyone went in to take their seats (I had done the table plan and included everyone's choice for the meal on their name place on the table along with the favours - a small metal bucket with some fake straw and 5 mini eggs, to go with the ducks on the cake) so we were about to head through when we had to wait for FIL to return from the toilet and as he sat down someone else got up to go so eventually we were announced as the New Mr & Mrs Avis and hubby manoeuvred my dress and helped me sit down. Next up speeches and first off was my Dad, who bless him was a nervous wreck! he started off by saying that he did a lot of public speaking before he retired and the last time was in front of 500 and he was more nervous now in front of 20 people than he was then! Mum had helped him write his speech and at one point while saying how proud they were of me he got a little choked and my bloody gran started again with her 'get on with it' rant to which my dad gave the greatest cutting response of ' we had to bring the mother in law!' this should have shut her up but she continued to chunter and my sister had to elbow her and tell her to shut up (I was on the verge of getting up and doing it myself! So dad decided he had to embarrass me slightly and told the delightful story of when I was about 8 and slapped my sister (who is 4 years older than me) across the face so hard so had a hand print for at least 30 min after and I looked my parents in the eye and swore blind that she walked into my hand! - I also noticed when Dad was talking about how proud they were he also included how proud they were of my sister too (i think this is because her and OH have absolutely no intention to get married even with 2 kids so he would never get to say it at her wedding).

    Next up was Tom who got through the usual thanks to everyone (he suffers anxiety and this was a big thing for him to do) he then went on to talk about me and us and said he never belied in all that chick flick stuff of knowing when you meet the one and all that but when we met he knew that we would be together forever and he has never met anyone like me and I am his best friend as well as now his wife. It of course made me cry I had no tissues to hand so pulled the Napkin that our best man had turned into a hanky for OH's suit as he had forgotten his! Then finally it was time for the Best man to get up (now we were a little worried and very intrigued as to what this was going to include as he is Tom's brother and had asked for a projector to be set up!) So up he gets and directs our attention at the projector where he has created a power point presentation! It was brilliant, filled with pictures of Tom through the years and mostly non embarrassing stories to go with them although the best was about the time Tom convinced his brother (3 years younger) to eat a slug and he spent the rest of the afternoon in the hospital getting it removed from his stomach! - there is a brilliant pic of that as I knew the story and Tom is looking mortified that he is telling that story and I am laughing away! At one point while making sure everyone could see the screen Joe's OH was asked if she could see alright and I just caught her weary response of 'it's ok i've seen it' so guessing she was the one it was practised on! it was absolutely fantastic and then it was time for the food. The serving of which was perfect - the kitchen had 4 copies of the table plan and what each person had ordered so the food was brought out and placed in front of the person with no need to ask who was having what - I think everyone enjoyed it as every time a course was served it got quieter and quieter all tables had been served and then it was silent!
    Then half way through came the thing I had been dreading - i needed the toilet and couldn't hold it any longer, so I enlisted Tom (this was a big thing as I won't let him in the bathroom at home if I am having a wee! but I din't want anyone else there for that so we managed it! and then once we were back at our seats I got him to take my heels off - it was time for the flats!
    As we finished up dessert the photographer appear as did the sun so we made a sharp exit to drive up the hills for photo's and left the guests to have coffee and petite fours without us, as I was piled into the Capri I couldn't really see for all the layers of skirt and I couldn't move my head as I had sat on my veil! however we found the perfect spot and got some amazing images! Once we landed back at Langdale I hot footed it to the spa to see if i could get a touch up on my make-up and got booked in for half an hours time - doing this meant I actually missed saying goodbye to the day guests who couldn't stay for the evening. we then had a break for a few hours to allow people to have a nap, freshen up and generally enjoy their room and surroundings. We stayed in the bar with the photographer - who took some pics (me with a pint!) but didn't include them. About 30 min before the evening was due to start Tom popped up to the room and never came back, however the sun had come out and looking through the bar window I could see that both he and the photographer were out by the car and the bonnet was up hence the engine pic that my dad said had to be included!

    Then the evening started, we had created our own playlist (eventually - i don't recommend it, it sounds easy but trying to get things in the right order and stuff nightmare!) and it was going well - after an hour we decided most people were there so it was time for the first dance, i totally forgot about cutting the cake until Sarah appeared and asked if we wanted her to announce cutting the cake and then the first dance. We had no idea what to do when cutting the cake so we ended up putting the knife through the bottom layers icing! - this was the layer we were keeping as the top layer was lemon sponge with lemon curd and lemon butter icing in the middle for my dad as the other 2 layers were fruit cake made by my MIL and tastes amazing but drenched in alcohol and my dad is allergic (hence the sponge layer). Then it was time for the first dance Neil young Harvest moon - we'd had a quick practice at home and planned to invite others in half way through, but we kept talking about it as we sashayed round and then by the time we invited others to join we were almost at the end of the song - whoops! Now I had promised my lovely husband that after the first dance we would go just the 2 of us and have a tequila slammer to celebrate, so I pulled him away from the dance area and towards the bar -on route to the bar we bumped into Joe and Rosi (the best man and his OH) so invited them to join us and our photographer who was supposed to leave after the first dance had heard the word tequila and decided it would be best to follow and we have great shots of the 4 of us doing our shots at the end of the photo's.

    After that the time seemed to fly we circulated separately to ensure we got to speak to everyone and met up every now and then for a sit down - the buffet came out at 9 (sausage and bacon ciabatta and so egg mayo and wedges and salad) it didn't last long! People started to drift of to bed at around 10:30 - at some point before then Tom helped me with another toilet trip this time in our room so i swapped my flats (which I hadn't worn in as I thought they are flats they'll be fine - nope I had blisters on my heels on both feet and had spent the previous couple of hours with the backs squished under my feet) for the slippers that were left for me in the room - it was brilliant my feet were really comfy and you couldn't see them under my dress! By midnight there were 5 of us left - my self and Tom, our bridesmaid and her husband and a friend of Tom ( it was the first time I had met him and I did nothing but take the mickey! - he is lovely and has a heart of gold but is very naive and a bit of a muppet!) and so we sat in the Lounge with the music turned down having a chat - we went through to the bar and had some more tequila (we finished the bottle and they had no cooking salt so the bar man ground a load of sea salt on to a saucer for us) then we took a large whisky apiece (we finished a bottle of Balveine too!) and sat chatting round the table doing a bit of dancing and just letting go a bit until about 1:30 am then it was off to bed!

    We were up at 8 the next morning to see everyone who had stayed at breakfast (I had a lovely dress and heels that i planned as my next day outfit) i crawled to breakfast in the trackie bottoms and zip up jacket I had worn the day before to get my make-up done and those trusty slippers! Breakfast helped perk me up a bit but I was very glad we had a late check out so we could go back to our room and have a bath etc, and that is exactly what we did we got back to the room and took a bath each and lay with some music on talking about the previous day, once feeling a bit more human ( i wasn't great but I had had 2 day with very little sleep and had missed 2 lots of pills) we opened a few cards and then started packing to check out. We still had everything we had taken before the wedding to take home - most of it was packed up for us and so we got it packed fairly quickly (once we had popped the balloons - apparently our bridesmaid was desperate to decorate the car and still is under the illusion that FIL managed to sneak the keys from Tom -- but he knows how much blood, sweat and tears have gone into that car so came and told him what was planned and was he happy for it to happen - he was so we found a car full of confetti and balloons about 50 she had another 50 but they told her no and there was a just married sign stuck in the back window and tin cans attached to the rear - we removed them before we hit the road) By this point I just wanted to go home and go to bed but that wasn't to be (our bridesmaid and her hubby are our best friends but they dither and we hate that, after they'd had breakfast they kind of tagged along with Joe and Rosi to the spa and then in to see us as we packed the cars) so we ended up having to go for lunch with them and then discovered that they (she) was coming back to ours to see lambkins (the only female lamb we had born this year and had been rejected by it's mother so we ( in-laws) looked after it and now if it sees any of us it starts shouting for it's bottle - she has now become too big to squeeze through the fence) so it was diplomatically told we would be going home and going to bed not having coffee after they had seen the lamb.

    So that was it we went home, I went to bed Tom brought up hot chocolate and joined me in having a nap! we had planned on calling a Sainsburys to get a chinese but we were too exhausted so our first supper at home as man and wife was egg and chips! cooked by Tom and it was delicious - exactly what I wanted. We opened the rest of our cards and presents and started to panic as we had to leave around 12 the next day (too miss the traffic and find our airport parking and hotel) and we still had to pack and get our currency and pay stuff into the bank! But we managed and landed at the Crowne plaza hotel at Manchester Airport for the start of our honeymoon at around 3pm but that is another story....................
     
    iPrincess26, Jun 26, 2013
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  2. iPrincess26

    Helen

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    Sounds like you had an amazing day :) I did some tequila too, 4 of us finished the bottle... Whoops!

    Can't wait for the honeymoon instalment!
     
    Helen, Jun 26, 2013
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  3. iPrincess26

    MrsGroves2B

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    I'm loving this thread! Can't believe I'll be writing my own in a few days! I don't drink so wont do the shots, but will enjoy the day! xx
     
    MrsGroves2B, Jun 26, 2013
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  4. iPrincess26

    Becky

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    What lovely speeches! That's really sweet of both your dad and husband! Sounds like you had a wonderful day, although your poor feet :( I have that same problem with flats. They need to feel really loose so that they don't pinch on the heel, and that is really bad for my feet too.

    Did any of the guests take a video camera?

    Can't wait to hear about the honeymoon! :D
     
    Becky, Jun 27, 2013
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  5. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    Thanks - Becky the main problem with the flats is that they came really high up at the back and even through my stockings they evidently rubbed! :( the speeches were fantastic and when we got back from honeymoon and I was sorting through stuff I found Tom's notes for his speech read them and was in tears again! As for video I hope not, none have come to light yet so i assume not.

    Will get on to the honeymoon at some point soon :)
     
    iPrincess26, Jun 27, 2013
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  6. iPrincess26

    MrsC2Be

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    Awesome - all sounds lovely, it's nice to look back and remember all the little details. I didn't go for flat shoes, I went bare feet for boogey disco time!
     
    MrsC2Be, Jun 30, 2013
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  7. iPrincess26

    MrsDay2Be

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    I need to know about the honeymoon now!!! not that way you understand but where? how long for? :D

    xxx
     
    MrsDay2Be, Jul 4, 2013
    #27
  8. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    Right it's nice and quiet at work so lets see how long it lasts and how much of the honeymoon I can get through!

    So my husband ever the traditionalist wanted to have our honeymoon soon after the wedding so we got married on the Wednesday and started the honeymoon on the Friday! I had plans to have almost everything packed before we went away but was given strict instructions I wasn't allowed to do too much as he wanted me to be able to walk down the aisle and enjoy our wedding day and not to cripple myself and have to spend a week in bed so all I had was the cases out and a bunch of my clothes thrown on top, but i did have lists :)

    As the Thursday was lost as we were both exhausted and we were due to head to the airport about 12 on the friday (and still needed to get money exchanged and cheques paid into the bank) Friday morning was a bit hectic, but we got packed, headed into town to go to the bank and discovered that we could use our bank cards abroad with no charge and they did foreign currency so we got everything done in the one place and OH nipped to superdrug to get some locks for our cases and we set of for Manchester Airport at about 12:30 so not too late.

    We got to the Airport and dumped the car in the long stay carpark (I had booked it in December!) then set off we our cases to the Crowne Plaza for the night (our flight was about 7am so we needed to be there for 4:30 - i can't leave it later as I always fear that we will miss the flight) so we got booked in (again ever organised I had booked the hotel they year before and had forgotten that I had said it was the first night of our honeymoon) so as we checked in the lovely lady on the desk congratulated us and asked about the day - she then went on to say that they had upgraded our room for us! and mentioned the 3 different restaurants we could choose from and did we want to book in for supper, we looked at the menus and booked our table for 6pm (planning on an early night so we could get some sleep for the long day we would have on the Sat) We got settled in our club class room which was lovely about 4pm and crashed and both had a nap! - then went down for supper, we ordered food and drinks (a pint each) and then a waiter came over with 2 glasses of champagne for us on the house and asked if we wanted our other drinks once we had finished the champagne! It was a wonderful surprise and great start to the honeymoon. The food was fantastic and after we decided to get a whisky each to take back to the room (I went to get them as we had left the locks for the cases in the car and OH went off to get them) I decided that the ethos for the honeymoon was it was only something we were going to do once, we had enough money to not have to question every purchase and that was going to start now so 2 double single malts (we both love our whisky) it was! (although was glad we only had one each when I looked at the bill it was £20!) Then back to the room to sip them and I had a bath in the hope that I would be able to sleep from about 8:30 ready for the next day.

    We tried to sleep but it just wasn't happening so by 10pm the TV was back on and I was checking facebook on the iPad - So glad I did as amazingly there was a message from our photographer to say our photo's were up ready for us to check and approve before others being able to log in and see them! (Amazing as he didn't leave till about 08:30/9:00pm and it would take him 1-1.5hrs to get home) and this was 9pm on the Friday they had messaged us! So we then spent an hour at least going through them and filling each other in on things we hadn't been part of and remembering various things from the day. All in all we had about 4hrs sleep if we were lucky but we were up remarkably easily when the alarm went off at 4am! Headed down to the lobby to catch the shuttle the hotel provide to the terminal, we got the cases checked in and then found the wheelchair bit as I wasn't taking my chair but had booked assistance at both airports both ways! As we had a few hours before boarding OH pushed and we zipped through security with ease and settled down for some breakfast. Soon enough it was time to board so we headed off to the gate where we were met by a lovely member of airport staff (he was lovely and great at what he did and obviously enjoyed his job but was a few sandwiches short of a picnic bless him) who was taking us and an older couple who had wheelchair assistance out to the plane as we were to board first and had to cross the tarmac. Then it was time to get on board (at the wrong end of the plane to where we were sitting but never mind) and we were off!

    We landed and were met by Pisa airports wheelchair assistance - this guy didn't hang around and OH almost had to run to keep up (not easy with 2 cases after luggage collection) but he did his job, Parked us right at the exit for the luggage belt and soon we were off again to the main doors and pointing us in the direction for the bus to the car hire section of the airport! There was no skipping the queue to pick up the car we just had to take a ticket and wait but soon enough we had signed everything and were off to clap eyes on our car for the first time (still think its ridiculous we had to take out a credit card as we don't have one just so we could hire a car, although the card came in handy later on).

    We had our little Polo and our sat nav was in place and programmed with the co-ordinates to our villa, I had the written instructions to follow as well and we were off on to the Italian motorway............... The motorway was the place I felt safest! we had driven abroad on the opposite side of the road plenty before but always in our own car and poor OH had to try and remember what side of the road to drive on while contending with a car were everything was in the wrong place he said it was like trying to drive all over again! We stopped at one of the supermarkets in the directions from the villa place and stocked up on food and wine (it was all so cheap, mostly local and fruit, veg and herbs were 3 times the size of over here!) we got to the checkout and our bank cards didn't work! luckily I'd had the foresight to get half our money in cash and half in the bank so was able to pay for the shopping - by now it was about 2:30pm we were hot, tired and hungry (we hadn't eaten since breakfast at Manchester and we get really grumpy when hungry) so neither of us were in the best of moods we were about 45min away from the villa but weren't supposed to turn up till 4pm - so we ploughed on thinking we would sit in the car if needed and eat when we got there.

    We arrived about 3:30 pm and decided to drive up the track and wait in the car if the cleaner was still there - no one was around so we went and got the keys and opened up, the grass on the path from the car park to the villa needed cutting as did the route up to the pool, but we could live with that so we went in - OH went and opened all the shutters as they were all closed then he brought the shopping and cases down while I put the food away. Now it had been said that there would be a welcome pack waiting and knowing how my MIL would set things out when they were running a holiday cottage (now our house!) we expected to find either on the kitchen counter or dining table,tea, coffee, bread etc that had been mentioned and info about the villa and the area. Instead there was some bread and spaghetti in a corner in the kitchen and the visitor book and a folder full of leaflets for things other visitors had been too! Also the cupboards were full of half empty packets of stuff (I don't mind salt and herbs but this was things like half eaten jars of nutella and flour that looked at least a year old!) it felt as if someone lived there and just moved out when visitors came, also the whole place was freezing! there was supposed to be underfloor heating but there were no instructions as how to turn this on (or the charges as it was listed as being payable locally) there was a blind that had fallen down sat on a window sill, a broken plug in the sink in the bathroom (we had to get a knife to open in and leave it open for the whole time), there was an open fire but no logs (there was a slightly charred log in there that must've been soaking wet after supper cooked on a rather filthy BBQ we covered it with lighter fluid and a 1/2 full bag of BBQ charcoal to see if we could get it going - we couldn't) so spent our first night with many layer on and the gas rings in the kitchen lit to try and keep warm! and I freaked my self out reading the guest book to find out that loads of people had found scorpions in the bedroom as well as a few snakes (a quick Google told us that the scorpions weren't poisonous over in Italy but it didn't calm me much as so no doors or windows were allowed to be left open - we didn't get any of those creatures in the villa!) also the complaint about the bathroom sink was in the guest book from a year before ....... Things weren't looking bleak, being tired and grumpy we decided to go to bed (after I'd checked it for scorpions) in the hope that things would look better in the morning as this was not the start to the honeymoon that we wanted!
     
    iPrincess26, Jul 10, 2013
    #28
  9. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    So Sunday morning things looked a bit better - the sun was shining we had lots of lovely food in and plenty of the most fantastic Chianti (made not too far away) in 1.5l bottles that cost the equivalent of about £3! Although we still had to use a knife on the plug in the bathroom sink, the blind was still down and we couldn't work the heating so OH had to spend the 1st half of the day fixing things! But we had plenty of stuff in and had planned to spend the first few days in the villa. Reading the guest book we discovered that the shop at the bottom of the hill (3 km of almost vertical S bends and single track - not fun) was now closed and the nearest shop was the co-op in Fornoli. We the day sitting around inside (it was a bit windy up that hill!) reading, listening to music and drinking in the afternoon, it was really rather nice and then out to the terrace to BBQ and eat supper. It was lovely but soon enough we ran out of wine :eek: and we had to get back in that car, we both hated it and couldn't relax going out in it but Fornoli was only about 8 KM away so we decided to brave it as we needed food and wine - we opted for siesta time as we knew the co-op was open right through and hoped that the roads would be a bit quieter - it was and we pootled round the co-op in a way I could never get OH to do over here stocked up and headed back. We still hated the car and by the tuesday afternoon we had worked out that we couldn't relax when out in the car nor even after we had parked up as I was petrified we would park in the wrong colour bay and get towed or something and we were both just dreading getting back in to drive back. So on tuesday evening I suggested that we take the car back on the saturday and book a hotel near Pisa for the second week where we could use public transport to get about and visit places because as much as we had planned to spend the first few days doing nothing neither of us wanted to spend 2 weeks in Tuscany not seeing places - OH said he would think about it while I quietly went about researching hotels near Pisa.

    Wednesday arrived and OH said how about visiting Bagni di Lucca as it was only a few KM beyond the Co-op that had become the only place we had seen so far, I was up for it if he was sure and he said we can't not go anywhere so lets give it a go, so lunch time came and we headed off we got the the first casino in Italy which is now the tourist Info and went to park in the bays along the side of the road, we pulled in and heard a big thud we had hit a pothole! So we reversed hearing a slight scraping and parked in the next one, got out and had a bit of a walk around and decided we would head back to the car and drive a bit more before stopping for lunch - as we got back to the car I thought I would just check and see if the pot hole had done any damage, looking at the wheel my heart sank and I announced to OH that it looked like we had buckled an alloy, he came and had a look and from the string of expletives it would seem he agreed - we didn't know what to do! Being the organised one I had all the paperwork for everything with me so said why didn't we go get some lunch and check through the paperwork about who to ring etc - It was the worst lunch ever and not just because of the panic that had set in for both of us and was getting worse as we fed of each others (and the supposed pizza was nothing more than some barely melted cheese and topping on a piece of very dry toast) so we found a number to call and decided to go take another look and see if we could get it back to the villa or the co-op in Fornoli. OH got down to take a really good look while i paced the pavement then I heard click, click, click and didn't have a clue it was coming from the wheel as OH popped off the hubcap on the steel wheel - no alloys just a completely undamaged steel wheel and a hubcap that had been pushed under the lip on the tyre! Relief coursed through me and we headed back to the villa both uttering we never wanted to be in the car again. Once back at the villa I again broached the subject of moving to a hotel for the second week and armed with info from researching told him how little it would cost and how much we would be able to enjoy the honeymoon and go places - I let him have a bath and mull things over once it had shown him details of 2 hotels I had whittled things down to, He came back down an hour later and asked to look at the hotels again so I showed him and we went through the list again and settled on one if he decided to agree that's what we should do (my OH is a nightmare at always seeing the negatives in things - it is a good trait most of the time and i know how to present things to him) so all he could see was the money we would loose on the villa and the car hire - I pointed out that we could always complain when we got back and see what happened, I had already emailed and mentioned that we were thinking of doing that (our travel agent was also on holiday that week but her boss emailed back and asked why so I mentioned so of the things - pool needed cleaning as it looked like it had mould on the bottom and the grass needing cut) she said she would pass it on. Anyway OH decided that yes we would move so as quickly as possible I booked the hotel (before he could change his mind - this is where the credit card came in handy as i used it to pay for the hotel knowing we could have it paid off within 2 months of getting home at the worst) They emailed us to confirm our booking at to ask if we wanted an airport transfer, I emailed back and explained that we were already here but would be returning a car to the aiport so could they pick us up and we would meet them outside arrivals - the asked which car hire company we were with and said they would pick us up from them - this was the start of great things to come.

    So happy that we would visit places the following we week we settled back in to doing nothing but eat, drink, read and sit in the sun. On Thursday morning a chap came and cleaned the pool so we decided in the afternoon to go and sit in the sun and maybe even give the pool a go - my god I have never been in water so cold even 10 min of constant swimming didn't warm us up so I was straight back out! and lying in the sun reading - while there 2 more chaps arrived to cut the grass (we felt a little guilty about leaving given how quickly they seemed to be fixing the 2 things we had complained about that we hadn't already fixed but that was soon alleviated) as they cut all the grass between the vines in the vast garden but didn't touch the 2 areas we had mentioned!

    That evening we for the first time had a couple of honeybees in the villa (we had seen plenty around outside but they didn't bother us and as we kept doors and windows shut hadn't had any inside) and we had no idea how they were getting in - we (i say we i mean OH) caught them in a glass and took them back outside and we thought nothing else of it, we had no food left out or anything so no idea why or how they got in. The next morning we as had become usual got up around midday and over the afternoon must've had 15 bees getting in - we eventually worked out they were getting in through the vents by the open fire so we blocked them off and that solved that problem but it was only the beginning of the nightmare! Around 8 pm that night we found an army of ants coming into the kitchen from the window OH went to take a look outside to see where they were coming from and discovered that they seemed to have set up home in the gas cupboard (this is where we collected and had to leave the villa keys and there hadn't been any then) so in he came an both searched the cupboards and google (thank goodness we had internet) for solutions. We found what we hoped was a bottle of ant killer under the sink (it had a pic of an ant that looked like it was being hit by lightening) so OH went out to spray the wall and empty the rest into the cupboard while I covered the windowsill and all round the sink and floor edges with a combination of talc and salt both of which according to a quick google would stop ants (it apparently takes all the moisture out of them and kills them) the kitchen looked a mess but soon the flow of ants deminished and eventually seemed to stop - a look in the gas cupboard out side confirmed the mass was dead, I was so glad that we had had supper and were leaving the next day - I couldn't bare to make anything in the kitchen after that and everything was inspected before being used and we kept finding the odd one. We knew we would be up early the next day to clean the talc/salt combo before the cleaner arrived (we couldn't leave it for her, we just aren't those kind of people - i even make the bed in the hotel the day i'm checking out and would strip it and fold it all ready for housekeeping if OH would let me) So after one final scorpion check it was off to bed in the knowledge that all we had to face was one drive back to the airport and then we could hand the car back and start our honeymoon again! What more could go wrong!
     
    iPrincess26, Jul 10, 2013
    #29
  10. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    So up at 7am to clean the kitchen as housekeeper could arrive anytime after 8am! Still a few ants meandering around but we manage to get cleaned up and have some ant free breakfast - by this point there is a bit of rubbish and only 1 small bin in the kitchen - so all week we made sure any food waste (not a lot) or anything that might attract pests had gone in the bin and anything else was tied up in a carrier bag and placed on top of the bin so it wasn't on the floor, as there was no information about where to empty the inside bin or if they recycle we had about 10 bottles) so it was all tidy ready for the house keeper, we got our stuff packed up and I settled down to read while OH had a bath, we were planning on leaving about 1pm to try and catch people having siesta hoping it would mean quiet roads. The housekeeper turned up about noon - she seemed a bit miffed when I told her we were leaving but she decided in that case she would come back when we had gone - I asked about the bottles and she then went on to tell me that she would take the bottles but she had a small car so could we take the rubbish 3 km down the hill and then about 2 km to the large bins in the village at the bottom of the hill! I was gob smacked I have no problem tidying up after myself but when we had paid for a luxury villa I don't expect to have to cart my own rubbish 5km to the bins.

    Needless to say we left the rubbish, and packed the car with our cases and headed back to the airport hoping that they wouldn't notice the light scratches we had added to the front bumper - It was a tense but uneventful journey back to airport and once we parked that car in the car park it was fantastic - the lady went down to check it over and came back signing the ticket to say that all was well and there was no damage (we had got away with it!) so now to go and find our airport transfer - we found him easily enough (we had been given his mobile number just in case) and although he didn't speak much English he was friendly and came and took our cases to carry back to his mini-bus and once we were seated we started the 15 min journey through the centre of Pisa to Airone Pisa Park Hotel just outside the centre of Pisa. It was brilliant being able to sit back and take in the scenes we were passing (although a passenger in the hire car I was also navigator and on edge) we passed the Tower which we had both been to before (separately) but planned a visit to together. Once at the hotel which while was nothing fancy but beautiful and felt like a real Tuscan style place, we were given a choice of rooms and after some translation issues (turns out Italians call the ground floor the 1st floor) we went to settle into our 2nd floor room with a balcony. It was a 3 star hotel and was perfect the room was basic but we had a large flat screen TV (although no English channels) and a fridge in the room and a large shower, toilet, bidet ans sink with plenty of light and a large mirror. There was a restaurant just behind the hotel and that was it - there was a bus stop that was prob 2-5 min walk away (although it took us about 10 with me I think we got it down to 7) and from there we could be at the leaning Tower in 6 min or Lucca in 25min.

    We ate at the hotel restaurant the first night and the food was amazing it was a smallish restaurant with 3 waiting staff inc. the manager and 3 in the kitchen but the food was amazing! it was authentic real Tuscan food and not the pizza/pasta tourist food there was about 4 choices for each course the first night we went for the full 4 courses each (antipasti, pasta course either meat or fish, meat course and dolce - sweet) and 2 bottles of wine (one with the meal one to take back to the room) and it cost us around 60euro! Only one of the waiting staff really spoke English but all couldn't do enough for us, the same with the Hotel staff and we went back to our room very happy with our choice and settled back to watch in Italian the quali's for the Monaco F1 GP and the hotel staff had told us which channel and what time both qualifying and the race highlights would be on.

    Sunday came the sun was blazing and there was very little wind as we were no-where near as high up as the villa had been, we went for breakfast and decided we would see if things would be open in Pisa on a Sunday and if so we would head there for the morning before heading back to watch the race. We asked and found that yes things would be open so we looked at the time table to see what time the bus was and checked to see if we had enough change to pay as we had been told it was cheaper to buy tickets before boarding (we never found the tabbachi in Pisa that sold tickets for our bus so always bought them on the bus) and the drivers don't give change - when all of a sudden 2 tickets appeared for us - a member of staff had 2 unused tickets that he was giving us to use along with what to ask for when we bought tickets and how to pronounce the name of the stop for when we were coming back. So we got sorted and set off for the bus, we managed it with no issues! and the driver was lovely and pointed out that we have to stamp our tickets in the machine (discovered that if you don't then you can get fined if inspected) and we alighted opposite the gated entrance to Piazza Miracole - home of the leaning tower.
     
    iPrincess26, Jul 10, 2013
    #30
  11. iPrincess26

    iPrincess26

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    Pisa was great and just as I remembered it we even found the bar that I spent most of the day in last time i'd been (12years before I was 18 and on a school trip to Florence, Rome and Venice and we had a day trip to Pisa - it was a trip open to the whole school and us 6th formers pretty much got of the bus had a look at the sights and planted our selves in a bar close to where we had to get back on the bus and stayed there!) It was busy but not heaving as it was Sunday. The other great thing the hotel staff did was give us a map of Pisa and mark on a route for us and what else we should see other than the tower. There was the most amazing proper stationary shop that sold paper, ink wells, nibbed pens, and nibbed quills! I eventually came home with a gorgeous turquoise feather quill and a small pot of Ink - I haven't used it yet but OH took one look at my face when we went in the shop and insisted that I got one - it's all made in Florence apart from the glass which is hand blown on Mirano island. We didn't take the obligatory tower picture as OH decided that we would do something different so we have one that looks like I'm licking the tower like an ice-cream! We wondered through the path that had been marked out for us and left the crowds and street sellers behind to find an amazing Piazza and some brilliant looking restaurants. We had lunch and our first pizza since we had landed just over a week ago - it took us that long! It was delicious but huge so we boxed up the left overs to keep us going later before the restaurant opened for supper! After a good look round we headed back to the hotel on the bus to watch the GP and have supper at the hotel restaurant again.

    Over the course of the rest of the week we were thoroughly looked after by both the Hotel and Restaurant staff and visited Pisa a second time but we fell in Love with Lucca and over 3 visits I think we covered the whole of Lucca within the walls! We loved the place although quickly realised that if we only wanted a drink it was far better to grab one from a shop and sit out somewhere as 2 cokes sitting outside from on cafe in a main piazza cost us 10euro! We ate lots of amazing food and drink some fantastic wines, we found the museum of torture in Luccca and went for a look round - soon wishing we hadn't as the torture devices from days gone by were horriffic and even worse some are still in use in some countries and others were still used until more recently than you would think! We both felt a bit sick after that! We went for lunch one day and the first place we settled on (as i insisted on eating outside give the weather!) turned out to be some sort of canteen service so we went to an inside restaurant (which actually had an out door area at the back) and had an amazing meal of 3 courses wine, water and coffee for 16euro each - it was delicious and as we didn't have coffee she only charged 15euro each.

    We spend rediculous amounts of money on a pick 'n' mix stall which sold the biggest fried eggs and cola bottles ever along with a meter long flump! and in Lucca I found an amazing home wear shop (Coin Casa) - research shows it seems a bit like next it does colthes and stuff as well but this was just their home wear shop and is where I got my fish dish! although I was restricted to just one (OH thinking of luggage weight limits) but they had a whole range of different shapes and sizes.

    We had supper in Lucca one night as I was a little sick of the same choices each night at the hotel restaurant - although this proved difficult as the last bus back was 8pm and many places weren't open early enough for us to have supper - we ended up having our second pizza of the honeymoon which again was great. I did one night at the hotel restaurant ask for macaroni cheese (it had been served to a child the night before) which they did for me no problem and was just what I was after. By the end of the week (no one else seemed to stay more than one or two nights) we didn't even have to ask for our starters or the wine we had become that predictable 2 carpaccio and a bottle of chianti! it was lovely on our second night we spied a bottle of tallisker (whisky) which hadn't been opened they opened it for us (we were the only ones to drink it) and in try Italian style there were no measures so by the end of the week there was only 1/4 of the bottle left (and we only had 1 each a night) - we insisted on buying all the restaurant staff a drink at the end of the last meal and the waiting staff had lemoncello and poured us both one too (at least twice the size of theirs) and the kitchen had a beer and a coke - we then had many things deducted from our bill.

    Then it was time to leave - the airport transfer was waiting and we were settling up our bill and once again had the 4 gin and tonics deducted from our bill! We had a wonderful week and 7 night BnB and about 5 meals from the restaurant that we put on the room came to a grand total of £700 - given that we had 3 courses, 2 bottles of wine and 2 whiskys most nights I couldn't believe how little it had all been. We would totally recommend the hotel and next time we go to Italy the plan is a night there and then we will stay in Lucca so we can explore it by night. Although I don't think I need to climb the massive tower with a tree at the top of it again. It was due to managing that and all the walking around we did without me being in agony the OH was trying to think of hot places that drive on the same side of the road as us (because that dry heat was a life saver for me) and announced that eventually we will move to Malta :) I've never been but it sounds like a great excuse for a holiday to me!

    All in all we had an amazing 2 weeks - looking back on the first week we enjoyed just doing nothing (at home there is always a job that could be done so we never totally relax as we did then) also we learnt that we will never hire a car again as even if you took away the fears we had we would still panic that something would happen to it - so next year it's a week all inclusive (I loved not having to think about what we were going to eat for supper) with airport transfers and premium liqour!

    And now we have been back home just over a month and married life is just the same as life before the wedding (although a little less stressful) and they honeymoon seems as if it was all a dream, and I have 3 days holiday left between now and April! :( But i wouldn't swap any of it (well maybe work) :p

    I promise I will try and get some photo's up soon - but I think that pretty much covers the honeymoon (at least the bits suitable for public reading!)
     
    iPrincess26, Jul 10, 2013
    #31
  12. iPrincess26

    MrsDay2Be

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    Hooray!!!

    Aw sounds like you had a fantastic time - I have to say you are sooo organised. I will be coming to you for top tips soon

    xxx
     
    MrsDay2Be, Jul 10, 2013
    #32
  13. iPrincess26

    Becky

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    Wow what a rollercoaster! Bet you are really glad you decided to change plans, sounds like the hotel was a very good call. It makes so much difference when you get good service - I remember a place we stayed in Sorrento, it wasn't the newest or poshest hotel, but the people working there were so friendly and helpful it really made the holiday for us.

    Looking forward to seeing some photos! :D

    Oh and Malta is gooorgeous. So much to see and do for such a tiny place! People are very polite drivers there too - one time we were about to cross a road, and there was only one car driving along it but they stopped and waved us across! You don't really need a car to go there, public transport is really good and it's not a big place.
     
    Becky, Jul 11, 2013
    #33
  14. iPrincess26

    Helen

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    Sounds amazing :)

    I've never been to Malta but it is high up on my wish list. My old neighbour was from there and said it was beautiful.


    Looking forward to seeing some photos!
     
    Helen, Jul 13, 2013
    #34
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