Ok I've delivered the painting today. As I've said earlier it was always going to be a very long shot to actually present it to Rafa himself as he works in Italy now and I've no doubt he's very busy plotting another conquest of Europe.
Anyway we went round to Rafa's again today and this time, as we had the painting in the back of the car, I rang the bell. As luck would have it Mrs Benitez (Montse) came to the gate and she was absolutely lovely! I told her who we are and what we'd done and she said she would pass the canvas to Rafa and that he'd be delighted. I told her everything we wanted to say was in the letter I'd written on behalf of all of us and I also handed her the personal letter Dave Neve had written. I told Mrs Benitez that we were all gutted about what had happened and I was chocker when she reponded 'so are we - but we'll be back'. I didn't want to disturb her busy day (she was cooking) so I left it at that and we left.