Blog No 144 – Rome, Italy 🇮🇹

At the end of May, Mr Zebrakat and I went to Rome for 4 days to surprise our dear friends. Unknown to them, we had been in cahoots with their children to surprise them when they had arrived in Rome from Florence. They had travelled from the USA to explore some of Italy before boarding a Mediterranean cruise. We’ve never been to Rome and knew that if we took this trip we could kill two birds with one stone.

Our Hotel

Cakes served on the morning buffet

Street scene outside our hotel

After getting the necessary paperwork to confirm I was fit to fly. I had the tedious task of obtaining travel insurance. I have to be honest it’s hard work and frustrating. Firstly explaining your cancer, as there is too many assumptions made. Secondly being refused by companies that specialise in cancer travel insurance. Thirdly the rip off price that you get penalised for.

We haven’t seen our friends for 11 years. Shocking, I know. Our last meet up was Las Vegas in 2008, which I have to say was an exceptional trip. Time can just pass you by sometimes.

Our friends J & S had organised trips prior to arriving in Italy. Therefore we were happy to slot into their schedule, as it gave me time to rest between our meet ups.

Trevi Fountain

Spanish Steps

We waited for their arrival in their hotel foyer. When they did finally arrive, we were both trying not to look too conspicuous in the corner. J was checking in and S took a seat. I approached S first and I will never forget as long as I live the surprised look in her face. Then came the hugs, the words to the effect of “OMG, I can’t believe it ” and then tears of joy. J turned around and thought it was a coincidence that we were both in the same hotel until we explained we came to surprise them. U.K 1 – USA 0. It was a fantastic feeling to surprise such a beautiful couple and in a magnificent city. Rome is a very charming european city and has a very unspoilt feeling about it. The city steeps in history and there is plenty to see.

Our hotel was around the corner from the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. We did an open bus tour for about 3hrs, we went around twice as there was so much to see. Did Mr Zebrakat and I see everything, no we didn’t so we may have to go back again someday.

Thank you J & S for a wonderful, emotional and rejuvenating time.

Weekly Blog No 64 – It’s My Birthday

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Its been nearly a month since I last posted, due to me not feeling 100%. Over the next month I will be going through a serious amount of scans and tests. Although I’m still feeling the effects of what cancer has to offer, I’m truly grateful to be here and celebrating yet another birthday. It’s my third birthday since diagnosis. Whoop whoop

It’s hard to imagine this time last year I was in Canada enjoying coffee and cakes with close friends. The previous year I was preparing for my liver resection. This year I’m preparing for scans and tests. 

What does the future year hold;

I shall attempt painting using watercolours and ink. I believe practice does make perfect. Trust me, i need the practice, it’s been years since I’ve held a paintbrush. Just to provide clarification it’s not paniting by numbers either. 

I want to see more of Europe and I’m just putting into place travel insurance to ensure that I have continuity of care if needed. The rest is taken care by J,  suitcase carrier, drinks fetcher, sunbed chaser, sun cream tech and of course he’s Bank of England for any future transactions required. Lol 

Just a final note in relation to my forthcoming scans/tests. I am usually a very positive and strong person, however i can’t help being concerned about the scan results this time around. I’m sure as time goes on you know that your buying time so it makes you more and more nervous, especially when you have issues.  I’m not ready for another op as I underwent 5 ops in 2 years. 

In the meantime, I will enjoy what today has to offer. Let’s just say,  I can use all of my 5 senses with the gifts that I have received so far. 😄