Back in July Opera Chic allerted us to the Verdi Festival in Parma - and I was intrigued by the thought of seeing Verdi's first opera Oberto, particularly in the tiny Teatro Verdi in Bussetto (photo left). So being the far thinking person I am, I reserved tickets for a performance on October 27.
For some reason I kept putting off booking a hotel - first we had to find one that would take pets; then we had to check the regulations on Italian Trains for carrying small animals just in case the paper work on the car hadn't been worked out; when the papers came through and train travel seemed a bit too complicated we decided to drive; so we bought a TomTom GPS as everyone said that was a necessity when driving in Italy; then we discovered all we had to do was hit the A1 Autrostrade di Sol and head north - though the TomTom will be required for other trips. And I still hadn't reserved a hotel - just kept putting it off.
Then, as I have been reporting the past week or so, our Budfordshire (don't look it up, its a made-up word) Reese took very sick and has been undergoing treatment. So what's the dilemma? Well we figure we have four options this weekend:
- Go as planned (there are hotels that accept dogs still available) and take Reese with us.
- Go as planned and leave him with our good friend and Laurent's colleague Linda who is more than happy to look after him at her country place outside Rome.
- I go as planned (I'm the opera freak in the family) and Laurent stays at home and attends to Reese.
- We just cut our loses - the not inexpensive tickets are non-refundable - and cancel the whole damned thing.
Going alone is not a particularly appealing prospect and to be quite frank its going to cost a fair bit in train fare and hotel - it appears there is no such thing as a single room, Europe is no longer a place that caters to the single traveller the way it did when I first came here in 1968. So though we've pretty much decided on option 3 it may just end up being option 4 - there will be other Verdi Festivals.
I hate dilemmas - even ones as trivial as this one!
25 ottobre - Santa Daria