Taking the train from Paris to Venice, Italy
Happily, since I haven't had much sleep in a few days, whoever I was supposed to share my train compartment with has not showed up so I have a compartment and a bed all to myself all night from Paris to Venice. The only hotel I could find in Venice even remotely cheap enough (and yet with my own private room) was $100 for the first night (because it is a triple room) and then $40 per night thereafter.
But since I slept so well on the train, I arrived feeling fresh and enthusiastic. I walked around (dragging my luggage) the suburbs of Venice for a few hours until I found the hotel. Their directions were abysmal. So then I waited in the waiting room (there was nobody at the front desk) for another hour and by the time a woman showed up (and yelled upstairs to the woman who was supposed to have been there) I decided to cancel my reservation there. This took another half hour or so and then I was free. I went back to the train station and discovered that I could get a ticket to either Bratislava or Budapest. I've always thought Budapest sounded like a romantic place so that's where I got a ticket to. The train leaves twice per day. Once 15 minutes after my train from Paris was due to have arrived that morning (but didn't; it had been late) and then again at 9pm to arrive the next morning at 11:30am.
So I found a luggage check place (3 Euros to store your stuff all day) and spent a very pleasant day wandering around the suburb of Venice I was in. I found an internet cafe that gave free food while you were online. I found a canal (just one). I found a store that sold cellphones and vaccume cleaners (who didn't speak enough English).
Posted: Wed - June 4, 2003 at 01:34