I write this and it’s almost 2006. I had some sense in the mid 1990s that there would be an evolution in my travel interests, and that I would arrive at a point in which my family would be ready to travel. I always imagined that I would see more of Europe with my family.

We hike the Dolomites, and we are aware of having such fun as a family. Spanking clean high-tech gondolas whisk us 4,000 feet up – from pristine village squares to mountain ridges with trails in every direction. We hike for two hours and have coffee and cake at a small log cabin in windswept high place. A family lives here all year (skiers come) and they even sell postcards and other memorabilia about this particular hut and location. Jack flops down in some high grass. I love all the 70 to 80 year old hikers I see.

Jack and Sophie turn out to be strong walkers, and out ahead of us lots of the time.