I love to take the train in Europe. Each trip has been enjoyable, some with more memorable moments than others. My last trip was with Max and Malina when I was pregnant with Matteo. We took the train from Bologna to Paris with an overnight in Torino to visit relatives. It was probably the most stressful train trip ever because we had too much stuff (suitcases, stroller, car seat, a pregnant mamma and a toddler). Keeping that in mind the scenery was spectacular!!! The most beautiful part of the trip was crossing from Italy into Switzerland; I could never take that path and be bored. The countryside is too beautiful not to be amazed.
Gare de Lyon – Train Station (Paris, France)
I have had many adventures on the train over the years. Today I would like to relive the time I overslept on the train. It was my first time to Europe alone. For me traveling half way across the world alone to Paris where I knew no one was the biggest adventure ever. One highlight of the trip was when I joined a new friend on a train trip to Southern France, Nimes to be exact. At the time I did not even know where Nimes was, but we took a metro to Gare du Nord (train station) and were off! We had the best time enjoying a local fete (festival) and exploring the city.
Gare de l’Est- Train Station (Paris, France)
After two days I had to return to Paris to meet another friend, so I left Nimes alone. Drained from the festival somehow I did not wake up in the middle of the night to change trains. I actually woke up the next day to a bunch of people that I did not recognize speaking German. After reflecting on what was going on and speaking with another passenger who spoke English I looked out of the window and realized that I was stopped at a station. That station was in Mullhouse, France (near the German border). I quickly exited the train and was given a train ticket back to Paris after showing them my ticket and explaining the situation. I did make it back to my hotel in time to shower, change, and meet my other friend at the train station before his train arrived.
Another memorable train ride was with my friend Lisa. We spent a month traveling around Europe before I started working as an “au pair” in Switzerland. On this particular train ride we were in Naples, Italy heading to Nice, France traveling overnight. We did not have first class seats (reserved) with our EuroRail passes so there was a chance that someone else would sit in our compartment. And it happened. We were joined by an Italian man from Genova. We spoke with him in French since neither Lisa or I spoke Italian at the time. I noticed almost immediately that he smelled. It was going to be a long night. Somehow Lisa and I found a position to sleep in and it was not comfortable. He would not stay in his space and we constantly had to push him to have space to sleep.
In the morning we were greeted by the beautiful Cote d’Azur. We took a break from the horrid stench and joined a group of people stretching their legs and talking while taking in the views. Eventually we arrived to Nice and smelly man departed the train wishing us “Buona Pasqua” (Happy Easter). We left the train happy that we had survived the night with smelly man.