Here we are, back in Italy where it is extremely cold but with clear blue skies and lovely views over frosty hills.

The main reason for going was to check on how the flat is surviving in the grip of a severe winter. Several friends had stayed there since we left in early November, and I needed to deal with the laundry, as well as any bills which had arrived. And of course there was a problem. As I was carrying a basket of washing to the washing machine in the garage, I was stopped by a neighbour.

“Have you had any mail from the administrators?” ( Every block of flats in Italy must have an administrator and have an annual meeting to arrange gardening, electricity, stair cleaning etc.)

It seems that the gardeners have not been paid and our administrator has run off with our money from last year! (Well, this is Italy, after all.) It is now in the hands of the carabinieri.

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