Just over a year ago we, along with my sister Louise and Brother in Law John, had planned for the greatest of vacations aboard the Silver Seas Silver Wind.

They got stuck in Montreal on the way while Rae and I got waylaid in Toronto for 4 days before we were transported back home.

Together we all vowed to try to complete the dream. We booked the similar itinerary and for the better part of a year talked and planned over many dinners and bottles of wine.

But my sister always had a fear. That we would not make the trip. That something similar would happen to prevent the holiday.

Since she also will not step onto a small aircraft I shrugged it all off considering her anxiety level to be much higher than mine, and took a more positive approach.

Well thinking that way clearly worked since we had one of the best vacations ever, with more laughter than I ever thought possible.

We visited the great sites in Florence, Venice, Split, Dubrovnik, Toaramina, Sorrento, and Rome…and even did an automobile side trip to Pompei to end our part of the journey.

John and Louise stayed on for another week. And guess what. Volcanic action is once more threatening to erupt into somewhat more than an observation from scientists.

With only two days to go before their departure they are really hoping for stability so they can get home after what has now been a very long holiday.

The emails keep saying she is praying and hoping. But nature pays little heed to human pleadins so we shall see.

In the meantime my mind goes back to a great vacation. Te first week Rae and I had alone was in the Ticino district of Switzerland around Lugano.

What an absolutely beautiful part of the world. It is scenic peaceful and tranquill, yet with all the tourist services you would expect.

For the entire vacation it was hotter than we expected. I wore my wide brimmed Tilley Hat and was really happy I brought it along.

I wore Exofficio underwear and Tilley Socks every day, saving packing space by washing those I brought every few days. They dry completely very quickly.

I had a couple of Royal Robbins Shirts and a pair of Exofficio walking shorts I was able to wash as quickly one evening.

We usually don’t bring wine back home or I definitely would have taken the Vinnibag along. Wine lovers and those who go on winery tours need to look at this great breakthrough product to protect glass in transit in you checked baggage.

If you want to ask about any of the places we visited and have me help you plan your next trip, email me at askjourneys@journeystravel.com