I left off yesterday preparing for a retrieve. Giorgio and I left shortly thereafter for Mike and Kathy. They had landed at Terni Airport, along with six or so other gliders. This was a pretty standard retrieve, with one minor exception--driving through Terni. I had a glider trailer in front of me, who lost me on the straightaway to Terni. I didn't see him again until we had finished putting Mike's glider away and were about to leave the airport. The Streetpilot 2720 with the European database is just incredible. There are a number of people here on the field asking about it. More about this when I am able to write about the retrieve from Hell. Ironically, I almost left the navigator at home. I had not had time to study it and had not yet downloaded and unlocked the database. I was thinking that our two handheld Garmins would be adequate, and I didn't need the extra weight. After being here, I am convinced that some guardian angel caused me to bring it along!! Maybe Nathan. And I want to personally thank Sam Zimmerman for introducing me to the navigator in Albert Lea. Thank you Sam.
The day before yesterday Giorgio's son Edoardo arrived for a weekend visit. So the three of them, the three of us and Mike's Grandmother, Mother, and Aunt went to our favorite restaurant for dinner. The proprietor had previously offered to make us something special if we could give him three hours notice. So we had specially prepared Lasagna and Stinco for dinner. Believe me the Lasagna was nothing like what we have at home--it was wonderful. The Stinco is actually cows hock, and was quite delicious. That was topped off with a variety of Gelatos. What a fun evening for a rest day that was anything but a rest day for Giorgio and I. (more later)
Yesterday morning on the grid Edoardo informed me that he had some bad news to tell Giorgio. He had gotten notice that his Dad's home in Torino had been broken into and ransacked. It is a beautiful home and Giorgio and Mariangela had just completed it. Giorgio was devastated, and Edoardo and Mariangela left for Torino in the late morning and arrived yesterday evening. Apparently only minor things were stolen, but the home was totally vandalized. I know how badly Giorgio wants to be there, yet he has chosen to remain here to work with us. That is an example of how much he has dedicated himself to this team. We personally owe Giorgio so much more than we can ever repay.
Stories yet to report are Competition Day 4, the supposed rest day, and the retrieve from Hell. They should be good stories so stay tuned.