Translation for 140 languages by ALS
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowline.
Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sail.
Explore. Dream. Discover
---Mark Twain



This is about my arrival to Italy. But first, throughout the diary entries and most of my original posts from Germany you may notice I reference "catching rides" or waiting for someone to confirm a ride. That's because of a German website called that essentially functions as an electronic hitch-hiking site. People going to a destination advertise or look for other travellers heading the same way in order to cut costs be it gas money or to split the fare of a group train ticket. And I suppose there is the added benefit of having company on a long trip. It is a wonderful travelling tool.

Most of the people I met via either spoke English or had a working knowledge of it and, man, that was oh so helpful.

I hitchhiked a ride from Innsbruck, Austria to Bolzano, Italy which I stupidly mistook to mean Bologna in Italian. Bolzano and Bologna are two very different cities with many, many miles between them. I was quite disappointed to see that I had wasted my time and money on the ride. In Bolzano I was rather glad to find no vacancies---though I can't help but wonder why any hostel would be full there----and boarded a night train outta there!

Initial plans were to travel to Florence but the overnight train ticket to Milan was far cheaper and faster so I bought it. Incidentally, the train had a long layover in Bologna....

Sept 9

   Caught a ride to Bolzano, which I mistook was non-English for Bologna, at nine. The one youth hostel was sold out so I continued on to the train station and mulled over my late night options; next departures were at 01:09 so I had roughly three hours to settle on a direction: Bologna, Florence, Milan or Venice? As the direct train to Florence was full--and a four-thirty arrival in Bologna, impractical--I chose Milan. Just like that my travels changed. Freedom is mobility. 
   Verona. Long wait until connection to Milan. The employees' responses to my mild confusion is not helpful. Cinque meses, they reply but I know that cannot be right ("five months") so I get anxious, thinking I've only five minutes to catch the connection. And the track? Cinque meses, they reply...Trusting my comprehension of the train schedule I schlump to Track 7 and apprehensively board the deserted train for some shut-eye. An African woman  is just as uncertain (and damn if I can tell if she is speaking French, African dialect, Italian or English) but I do my best to nod and shake my head simpatico.
    train dork awakes me to inform that 2d class is in the next car. Should I have been offended? Was just glad to be on the right train...Second Class is not a whole lot different than First Class. In fact, I sat where I sat because I thought it was 2d class.
   arrival to Milan. Milano!...Takes me a full goddamn hour to locate Tram 5 for the hostel--which turned out to be a hotel. 
     shower and nap [Hotel San Tamoso]
    bought a local SIM card. Had to produce identification. Stupid, bogus security crap.

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