Why does it always rain when I go to Lake Como?

As beautiful and atmospheric as it was, this was the best we got all week:

I'm not really complaining.

After shooting down the motorway on Friday night (and turning up in a village just along from where we stayed last time, like, y'know, when we actually got to see the sun for a few hours) we pretty much flopped into bed straight after dinner.

Whilst Magro and I were dreaming of lie-ins and long lazy mornings, Andrea and Martina had different ideas and promptly woke us up from our sofa bed at 9am. The bastards. Lucky Mollie was locked in her own little room and didn't surface for another hour, when we breakfasted on chocolate chip biscuits and coffee.

And we contemplated what to do on this grey, drizzly day.

I mean, what is the point of going to Italy if it's just going to rain all the time? It's like, as soon as I'm in the office, the sun reigns supreme in the sky. As soon as I go away for the weekend (or even get ready to leave the office in the evening), it's rain o'clock and all my hopes are dashed!

Whilst we got ready, Andrea made some of his famous dough and left it to rise.

I will have to pinch the recipe off him so I can make my own next year because he really does make fantastic bread and pizza and foccaccia and it's all vegan!

We made the most of a brief break in the rain and went for a walk along the lake.

We didn't get very far before we were caught in the rain again but we stuck it out for a bit at least.

Swinging home via the supermarket to stock up on alcohol nutritious things, we headed home where we were once more treated to high-end vegan cuisine by Andrea.

Vegan carbonara using soy cream and tofu (so much better than you would think!) and courgette "meatballs" with a simple but delicious side salad. Just what the doctor ordered after being caught in the rain.

Look at that steaming plate of carbonara. Just looking at it is making me feel damp and cold and in need of its warming embrace again.

Afterwards, Andrea gave us a masterclass on kneading bread as he began preparing dinner mere seconds after lunch was finished. I keep trying to persuade him to give up his new career as a psychologist and go into food (partly because I want to be able to eat his food all the time) but he won't have any of it, even if he's always busy cooking something!

It was lovely being able to spend some time just being completely relaxed and without having to do anything. Of course I would have loved it if it had been swimming-in-the-lake weather or biking, hiking and running weather but it was so tranquil being able to chill on the sofa with a magazine and listen to the gentle sounds of Martina and Andrea bickering over soya cream (Martina brought the wrong one in her backpack hehe).

Even if it had been gorgeous, I wouldn't have been able to enjoy it. After lunch I was absolutely knocked out - my body just felt like it had crashed. I had the sensation of being in a fast car, my limbs heavy and restricted and my neck in a permanent state of discomfort. My head was swimming, my heart palpitating and my stomach churning. It wasn't fun. Magro was lovely and got me to lie down under a blanket, saying I'd had a heavy week (Arcade Fire gig, work after 4 hours sleep, a wedding, getting caught in the most horrendous downpour on the way to work which soaked the spare clothes in my backpack, getting the awful news about Millie).. So I went to sleep for a couple of hours, waking only when I heard the word "gelato" being thrown around...