One of my absolute favorite weekend getaways that I took while living in England was a whirlwind trip to Milan. With the way the cheap fares worked out, I was only in the city for 24 hours … and it was magnificent, too magnificent to fit into a single post.
As with all my trips, there were little things that didn’t go as planned. By the time I took this adventure, I was prepared to take things in stride. I had read in a guidebook that I would need to buy my bus ticket in a tobacco shop and then take the downtown bus. I felt so pleased with myself knowing this vital information. What I didn’t know that would have been helpful is that there was more than one bus going “downtown.” I did not end up on the right one.
Once I realized things were askew, I got off the bus. I had noticed that there were large city maps at each bus stop, so I figured I’d take a look, get my bearings, and and go from there. Best laid plans…
What I couldn’t tell from on the bus was that those wonderful maps at each bus station did not have a “you are here” indicator. I had no clue, and I spoke no Italian.
This was during the Second Gulf War, and most of Europe was virulently anti-American, so I was hesitant to speak English. I tried my pigeon Spanish. I think I amused the elderly women at the stop. Finally in what would have been an award-winning charades performance, I asked where we were on the map. Finally as the next bus was arriving, one of the women walked over and pointed on the map. Graci!
Since I was only a couple miles from the hotel and and I only had a small backpack, I decided to walk. I loved wandering the streets and seeing the non-touristy spots. I bought a gelato from a street vendor – my first of three gelatos during my stay.
It was definitely a case of getting there being half the fun!
Am I the only one that regularly gets on the wrong bus/train while traveling? or What was your favorite travel misadventure?