Well it’s goodbye to Italy, the World Champions lost to Slovakia and they are going home already with their “colas” between their legs (a bit like Goran a couple of nights ago when they didn’t let him in to a “pijo” discotheque en Sandton!). Of course it’s not like the old Italy, they don’t for example have a David Villa or a Xavi! Or for that matter an Iniesta or a Fernando Torres. Or a Xabi Alonso, or a Casillas, or a Cesc Fábregas, or a Sergio Ramos or a Puyol! In fact we are not sure who they have apart from Buffon (who was injured anyway) or Cannavaro, who is going to hang up his boots from now on he says. But it’s a touch of attention to “la selección”, and they will have to be doubly careful this evening against Chile if they are not to follow them home (just turn left at Cairo instead of right!).
And talking about giving directions, we decided to make a trial run to Pretoria yesterday. Sat Nav seemed OK at first with our instructions, but we seemed to be going for hours, and wasn’t that a border we crossed some time back? Anyway, it’s only when we see a spray of water flying a mile high in to the sky that we ask a local passer-by. We are in Zimbabwe, and the famous falls are just up ahead, next to the border with Zambia! We check the Sat Nav again: “where did you say, Pretoria? Oh, I’m sorry but I am a little deaf – I thought you said Victoria!” We only get back to the hotel in time to watch the late night highlights (Holland top their group and Japan are looking good too! We may have to play one of them later if we get to the quarter-finals). But this morning we are leaving very early and we are taking a map with us to be sure. We couldn’t sleep anyway because of the nerves, and Goran has already bitten his fingernails down to his knuckles with worry!