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Letters | March 2010

Reader’s Find: Italian Hideaway

My husband and I are just back from our annual vacation in Puglia, where we spent a week at our secret spot: Villa Magnolia (doubles from $174, including breakfast), a charming 18th-century villa amid olive and almond groves. The owners—husband and wife Ron and Lesley Simon—restored the property to its former splendor, with four antiques-filled rooms. Ron would get up extra early to clean the Roman-style saltwater pool before our morning swims, and to manicure the beautiful wildflower garden where we’d enjoy our breakfast (fresh fruit picked from the estate). One night he even taught us how to prepare pizza in their outdoor oven; when my husband mentioned that he likes his spicy, Lesley went out into her vegetable garden with a torch to get some hot peppers! We’ve traveled the world and the seven seas and, for us, this is the jewel in the crown. —Marlis Ritter, Bregenz, Austria

T+L Asks: What’s Your Worst Travel Nightmare?

Plane Ride to Paris—From Hell

I was en route to Paris for a three-week holiday. My first flight to Dallas from LAX was delayed an hour, then another hour, then finally cancelled. I was put on another flight—delayed! After pleading with customer service I was switched to a different flight. Missed the connecting one from Dallas so I had to stay overnight near the airport. Since my suitcase had already arrived in Paris, I had to buy my necessities at the local gas station—and I didn’t get reimbursed for anything! Finally made it to Paris a day late; luckily, my luggage was still waiting for me in baggage claim. —Glenn Castillo, West Hollywood, Calif.

Paper Chase

Lost my plane ticket home on Capri and had to travel to Rome and back in order to get a new one issued. Argh! —Yasmin Marinaro, via Facebook

Bedridden in the Big Apple

I started an around-the-world-trip in 2001. First call was New York City. Within 24 hours of arriving I was rushed to the hospital with meningitis, where I spent the next 15 nights in intensive care—I even died twice! I left with a $517,446 hospital care insurance claim. —Trevor Smith, Maidstone, England

No Way Home

After a two-week trip to New Zealand, we got to the airport and discovered that our travel agent had failed to include return tickets. We had to purchase new ones on the spot. —Jo Norris Palmore, via Facebook

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