Yesterday, I was too frustrated to construct a blog entry so I put it off until today. I got up in the morning and headed for the train station. My goal: Pompeii. I arrived at Orvieto’s funicular railway and paid €1 to get down to the train station. I got to the train station and paid €11 for a ticket towards Naples, connecting through Roma Termini. When I arrived at Roma Termini, I went to transfer to my train and was told that there were “track problems”. This is all I could get out of the worker in my broken Italian.
I stuck around Rome Termini for about an hour and a half before I gave up and dropped another €7 to head back to Orvieto. Pompeii is such a large site that you really need more than a day to see everything. I was going to hit the highlights and needed a full day to explore.
I did observe some interesting differences between American and Italian transit riders. When the worker informed people that there was a delay, the Italians didn’t seem to mind. They just walked to the nearest caffe and plopped down for a coffee. This response was the same from young students to businessmen. If anything is delayed in America, people begin to throw fits and scream.
I spent the remainder of yesterday in Orvieto watching a light rain fall over the city. My roommates had another party and I had to keep reminding myself that it was the last night. I was also kept awake by a cat screaming outside of my window. It made me very upset. I’m pretty sure it was giving birth because it would stay quiet for about 30 seconds followed by a minute of blood curdling screams. It sounded like it was in a lot of pain and I pray that it was just giving birth and wasn’t hurt. It fell silent after about a half hour. I felt bad that I couldn’t help that cat. I find it funny that I had more of an emotional connection with that cat than I did about my roommates. I’m not so sure I would help them if they were screaming. I would just put on my headphones and blast Miles Davis in order to drown out the screams as I drowned out the laughing, screaming, and door slamming last night.
This morning I woke up and got the remainder of my things packed after taking a long shower. I stood at my window for 5 minutes to take in my last view of this beautiful city. I smelled the sweet air and watched birds circle in the sky above the church bell tower in the distance.
"Goodbye, Orvieto," I said aloud before shutting my window.
I took the now familiar ride down the funicular and to Roma Termini in order to get to the airport. I’m currently staying in the Hilton Rome Airport hotel. It’s connected to the airport via a long walkway. After arrival, I decided to order room service. I’ve never gotten room service before so I thought: when in Rome, right (literally)?
The food ended up being delicious. And I finished it while watching some Italian television. As I was putting the tray in the hallway, I watched in horror as the door slammed shut behind me. It’s worth mentioning that I am only wearing a t-shirt and pajama pants at this point.
"Fuckin’ stupid, man!" I berated myself out loud.
My bare feet clapped down on the tile floor as I made my way to the elevator. I walked confidently, yet embarrassed, to the front desk to explain my situation and get a second key. Businessmen and women were in the lobby giving me strange looks. I’ve never felt more like Howard Hughes in my life.
I’ll spend the rest of the night in the hotel room hanging out. I’m currently watching a couple of soccer games being played in the half size fields behind the Hilton. They seem pretty serious. One even has a referee. I wish Tucson had these kinds of fields. They would be perfect for pick-up games.
research / travel / musings
This personal blog contains a variety of topics, both academic and not. I post sporadically (for now).