Monday, August 29, 2011

Planes trains and automobiles

Finally after two years of plans and a long day of traveling,  we're here!  In Italia!  Mangia! (Let's EAT!)
One car, three planes, a bus, then another bus, a train, and a taxi, and 79 steps.  UP. We are finally here.

And the best part of it all, besides the fact that we are in the heart of Italy, in Lucca, is that our friends, Kim and Don have been here long enough to get settled into our apartment, buy some food and wine, and greet us with all of the above, on the rooftop terrace overlooking the mountains of Tuscany.

  After a few minutes of freshening up - a quick shower, plug in the phone and computer, we sit in the Tuscan sunshine and laugh about the adventures of travelling such a distance.  Our only snafu in the entire day and night was the train trip.  We purchased our train tickets to Lucca from Florence.  And with minutes to spare, found the exact train, (miraculously) and hopped aboard.  After making sure we were on the right train with some kind Italians, we settled in for the short trip.   About a half hour into our trip, the ticket puncher dude came by to punch our ticket.  Well, Linda and I are pie eyed after so many hours travelling and we look at him like he is from Mars.  I dig through my papers and stubs and tickets from the day and keep handing him items -  finally finding just what he is looking for.  He looks at me and ticks, like only an Italian can.  Not good, he says, shaking his head and looking in my direction.  We look at each other and panic.  We think we might be headed in the wrong direction.

But no.  Nothing so terrible.  He ticks again.  And shakes his head.  Like we've done some horrendous wrong.  WHAT?  I'm tired and ready to just be there, and need some grace  and kindness right then.
He says we FORGOT to validate our ticket.  And we look at each other like he just spoke in Martian.  Forgot?  Evidently there is some machine that you have to put your ticket into before you board.  He says, "It a says a it a right a here a in a english a".

But he is going to give us a break.  Instead of taking us to jail, he will only charge us a fine of five euros, but don't a let it a happen again a.   Not to worry.  We've learned our lesson.

Say it with a SMILE and a handmade TILE!

1 comment:

Glenn Hadsall said...

The view from the rooftop terrace looks perfect! What a great way to start the trip.