And along came...

Okay, at this stage, just ourselves, the missing travel agent, an apparent 40 degrees at midnight, 10 spent bottles of water, 14 hours in transit and the mad cabbie.

Now then.

Here, it was still our tightly packed twoness, the bus square with its hawking honking horns and yummy turkish slices o'cake, and streets. Pratt-Maltese streets. Deep Valetta. No rules, great driving, good shoes.

Anya. I hope you find everything you hope for during your 3 weeks in Valetta, and even more when you're back to Odessa. Say, don't you think this is a bit weird even for a supposedly architectonic masterpiece-wise flash rebound? Mdina, the silent city.

The Aussie lady with five kids on the bus back from Bugibba. The pic was taken outside Rabat where a 4-yo taught us, in english, how to hike past the city walls. That's why I thought of you. Fly safe back to Sydney.

And then came Wonneke and Dick. Sorry, man, if I got it wrong - my dutch apprehension ain't what it used to be ;) Here's to the countless foes who surely have fallen by the Victoria citadel gates and its "blessed" cannons - I guess fanaticism isn't picky about race or creed... I'm mailing you smt as I write this, thanks guys! Looking forward to extended conversations :)

The temples, at Hagar Qim, Ggantija and on the way to Marsaxlokk. Where we met two german girls whose address has only a name, and an also german couple (hey man! the Tornado won't go out of service yet!) all of whom we expect to see again soon!

Then the uncountable hordes (yeah, you half-Irish plastering-dude and the sangria lady with bolognese skills and also the eight-fold maturity brigade downing John Bulls) of the quarter-of-an-hour chats.

And airport staff (no, no MLA, sorry 'bout that one...) and Cpt Duque and...

Man, am I tired.

I won't comment on any subjective, objective, or expletive aspect of the whole trip. BE Maltese, then be NOT Maltese again. Then apply that rule to all your ventures and escapades - or even "work" jumps.

Things are there to help you cope with passing years, still.

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