Monday, November 18, 2013

When a trip is a disaster, for a short time

Sometime a wonderful trip home to Italy hits some snags…..and you wish you never left home…

But if you can bear it (the grin may come later) it works out.   The disasters one at a time are not difficult to manage.  But when they hit in groups that I am stretched to the limits.

1.  Today,  finally understanding that the heat is on from 8pm to about 10pm but the hot water is off until the next morning…..  today it did not start until 9 am.   When you have an early train this allows you to skip a shower or run to the train.  And washing your hair is out of the question, no dryer in the room.
Working through this small inconvenience I reach the station with lots of time.  
2.  the ticket office tells me there ‘might’ be a train strike for MY train.  But she is not sure….
Strikes in Italy are frequent and sometimes for short periods of time so I drag two bags to the platform and wait.  
The announcement comes and now hundreds of my ‘new best friends’ race to the ticket office to change their tickets.   Some of the hopeful passengers had no idea this was a possibility and stand on the platform stunned.   Some obvious tourist (like me) from non English speaking countries can not understand the Italian only announcement  and do not know which way to go.  
Meanwhile I am racing to the the ticket counter.

#3.  The ticket office employee has had a bad day.   She knows the strike will bring hundreds of passengers into the office and she is having none of it.  
Her scowl could break china!
But now she creates problem #3.  She enters something into her computer and her next words are ‘mamma mia’.    She runs into the supervisors office.  She talks with her co worker.  Next the supervisor comes out and looks at the computer.  It goes on and on and the line grows with every head shake.

#4.   ticket in hand for a direct train not affected by any strike is for the WRONG seat but I am sent off with the closed sign shoved into the window.  Guess she had had enough.

#5 and no ones fault.  This train goes to a different train station in Florence and I have no idea where it is.   But if the train takes me to the next town with the next hotel room with hot water and a hair dryer, I will take care of the rest. 

Now I have a few hours to continue visiting Verona, certainly not a hardship.  

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