New and familiar faces

Today was the day! Finally got to see a familiar face and a gorgeous one at that – Shannoline! Shannyn and her husband Ben and their sweet blue eyed boy Teddy are with friends on a buddymoon following the wedding in Switzerland (I think) recently. After a quick walk through Monopoli’s Old Town, which was just gorgeous, we set off to find our friends.

I agreed to come up to see them in Polignano a Mare which is only about 15 minutes away by car. I’ll just jump in a taxi! Do you think I could find one in all of Monopoli? No. We walked around for an hour. I rang a taxi company and he said he could come in an hour and a half. Wtf! Ok, so let’s get the train – it’s only 5 minutes on the train! Plus – that would be heaps cheaper! So I set off for the train station, trying to navigate the bloody footpaths in the pram (and by this time it’s getting hot). But, because I am terribly inept at reading maps, I went the wrong way and led us even further away from our destination. I was hot and sweaty and terribly frustrated at myself. I haven’t been sleeping very well either, so I threw myself a little pitty party and sat on a park bench and cried. The adjustment to a new city is the hardest part for me – working out the lay of the land and how to get around. I find it the most challengingn compared to anything else about travelling. I’m also not real bright which complicates things!

So I put my big girl pants on after realising that bailing on seeing Shannyn was not something I wanted to do. I gave Hardy the phone and said “make sure I keep following the blue dots on the map.” And he navigated me – pointing left or right. What a hero! We found the train station and got two tickets. The next one was about 25 minutes away. But it appears the regional train line in Italy is even less reliable than Queensland Rail. The screen said it was delayed 15 minutes. Then 25. And you know what happened when it did show up? People clapped! So it’s not just when the plane lands (which yes happened again from Barcelona to Bari).

Hardy again followed the map to get us to Shannyn and Ben’s hotel which is in a beautiful spot in Polignano. Quick change of clothes and we hit the beach!

After lunch Shannyn and I walked around Polignano’s Old Town which was also really pretty.

Before we knew it was time for me to gatecrash their friend’s party, and what a spot to have their nearest and dearest (plus Hardy and I!) – their apartment was in Old Town with a terrific view over the beach and town. A buddymoon is such a great concept and their friends were a lovely group of people, most with kids of varying ages. Hardy hit it off immediately with another little boy so they got to play which was lovely. The managers of Shannyn and Ben’s hotel kindly offered to drive us back to Monopoli so we could avoid the issues from this morning completely which was a huge relief! Plus, it gave us time to enjoy this incredible sunset.

Hopefully the party venture down to Monopoli to enjoy our slightly larger beaches tomorrow as it would be great to spend even more time with our new and old friends.

Ciao bella xx


  1. Katherine Jean, you should know that males have excellent navigation skills, even if they only 4 years old!! Get him do it from now on!!! Hope today is equally great with Shannon and friends.
    Love DadXX

  2. I’m laughing and crying with you my love. This is a growing experience for all of us. You – because you’re out of your comfort zone and managing beautifully; me – because you’re out of your comfort zone and managing beautifully; father – coping with his little girl being out of her comfort zone and managing beautifully; and Hardy – because he’s doing the best of all at being a big boy!! Wow! Love you!

    1. Exactly! And that’s what I wanted from this, to prove to myself that I could do certain things and of course have a bloody good time! Hardy is so resilient it’s amazing. Puts me to shame!

  3. Katie, I have just caught up on all of your blog posts and I’m in awe of how you have managed with whatever has come your way. Your trip is such an adventure, just love your writing style (honesty and humor). Your photos are beautiful and what amazing memories you have created for your little man and for yourself. You’ve made my night, so entertaining, better than anything on TV!! Love to you and Hardy and look forward to your next installment. 😘😘

    1. Aww thanks Robyn! Glad to hear you are enjoying it. The whole trip was meant to challenge me as well as to have a good time and so far there is a good balance of both! xx

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