So, both passports are back and they spent all their money but ran up no debts and their cash cards, EHIC cards are accounted for.  I may be imagining things but they stand a little taller.  They washed their clothes as they went and Atticus left a pair of boxer shorts on a lamp post in Messina where they snagged as they fell from his drying balcony.  They learnt tolerance and made friends from around the world.

They danced wildly and constantly while following Caravaggio down Italy, they each had about 5 favourite places and had strong views on all sorts of things including the catacombs in Palermo and the sanctity of the body. They speak with familiarity about Serpotta and unabashedly about St Lawrence and faith. We, as a family, have a whole new ocean of conversation and they are definitely swimming in it rather than being fish out of water.  Cultural capital is not about exclusivity but inclusion; assuming the right to be part of the bigger world, to be mobile and not to be limited by personal history.

And I received this nice thing from one father, an old friend, who (also) sent his twins, Jude and Henry:

Laidlaw to Irvine
Bennet to Edwards
Hector (in the History Boys)
Leonardo and Verrocchio
Cézanne to Matisse
Donatello to Michelangelo
Shakespeare to Keats
N Ross to Jude and Henry
It’s all basically the same thing – ‘Pass it on’

And lastly, it’s Thursday after their return on Monday and Cosima is complaining of an AHA hangover, when nothing is quite exciting enough, not even London.