I am back from Italy.
Had a great time - 3 couples traveling in a van.
We got rained out of Florence, but we spent an evening in Verona. Verona was well worth spending a couple of hours walking around old town.
We did make it to Venice, but it started raining in the evening. Venice was nice, but I am not sure I will do a repeat visit.
Spent two wonderful nights in Vernazza of the Cinque Terre. Vernazza was my ideal spot. Peaceful evenings, minimal crowds (the weekend did start getting a bit busy though), views of the sea, friendly people (lot of them did not speak english, but were more than willing to talk to you with added hand gestures), ocean views. The morning air had the scent of fresh bread and the sounds of people in a small town getting their day started and opening shops. My kind of place. We all started planning our next trip to Vernazza.
However, I expect Vernazza is not the place for everyone. You cannot drive into town and the walkways were very steep (some of our rooms required walking up 100 steps in windy alley like walkways. If you look at pictures of the area, you will understand why. I can't wait to get back.
The trip was full of food, drink, and walking/hiking.
We also spent a couple of nights in Garmisch, Germany. Wonderful time there too.
Did not have time to think about software and did not check email for a good part of a week.
Well... time to get back to programming.