Monday, November 3, 2008

Ode to Kathy

Hostess extraordinaire, beer bully, travel agent, tour guide, translator.
I think this only explains a small facet of Kathy. To truly understand how she made our trip to Europe fantastic, here it is in a nutshell:
First off, there were the emails. Back and forth about what we might like to do once we got to her apartment in Luxembourg which would serve as our home base for six days. Ultimately, she came up with a great plan that included wine tasting in France, a tour of Bastogne, Belgium and a quick trip to Trier, Germany. Not to mention all the other fun stuff peppered in between.
Kathy met us in Pisa, Italy where we all melted from the heat. After visiting the cathedral next to the leaning tower, she claimed it was "Time for a beer and a gelato!" This may seem benign but it was 10:00am! Lunch and dinner included lots of wine ordered and translated by Kathy complete with hand signals to illustrate the requested size " Una grande Picher de vino"...numerous ones. Needless to say, I woke up with a bit of a headache. I needed to learn how to pace myself.
Once we arrived in Luxembourg for the next leg of our trip, "Shall we get a drink before we go out?" or "Let's stop for a beer." Thankfully there were two sizes available. Kathy and Rob always ordering "Grande" and I got what looked like a kid's size in comparison.
After a delicious meal at a local Asian restaurant and numerous "GRAND pichers de vin rouge" (by the way, even if she doesn't speak the language, and she doesn't, she still manages to get anyone to understand that she wants wine and lots of it) and a sake in a rated "x" shot glass, I tumbled into a very comfortable bed after cleaning up in my own bathroom. Pure Luxury.
Sleeping late in the morning and waking up to coffee and an offer to go to the local pastry shop for breakfast, this is my kind of vacation. We were off on a car trip chauffeured by Kathy and her GPS. The car was already set up with snacks, wine, water, soda, napkins, you name it. Like I said before, hostess extraordinaire.
The Thomases mini bagels and the People Magazine with the Clay Aiken coming out story that we brought will never be enough to thank her for the wonderful memories and great times we spent in Europe together. Thanks, Kathy. You made our vacation!

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