The Sixth Estate
Wednesday, November 26, 2003
QUOTE OF THE DAY : "They're pretty big I guess..." - Me, on The Alps.

SONG OF THE DAY : Luciano Pavorotti - Nessun Dorma


Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.

It's been a hell of a few days. To sum it up. When I last left you I was in Munich. After that I headed to Vienna. Now I am in Verona, Italy.

First off let me say the Alps are pretty amazing. Leaving Munich, my train rushed towards the gaping maw of the mountains. They encompass you, and steal the horizon. They are something to see. The mountain towns along the way are amazing. Villages full of red thatched roof cottages, with a giant churches in the middle of each one.

Stopped in Salzburg, incredibly beautiful place... most places in this region seem to be insanely nice. Vienna was cool. Reminded me of Berlin quite a bit. The hostel I was staying at, The Wombat was one of the best I've ever seen. If you're in Vienna you must stay there.

Now you'd think I was a fugitive from justice or something. Every time I get on a train I end up being confronted by the police. As I was leaving Munich, I was calmly sitting in my seat eating some brautwurst with mustard, I see the conducter and two dudes walking towards me. I immediately thought, "Ah he must be showing them to their seats or something."

One of the men said "Hello." I of course replied by saying hi. Next thing I know he's flashing a badge in my face

"German Polizei, Passport please."

I was like... whoa... ok... sure here you go. They then proceeded to search my bags, seeing that my passport had Amsterdam stamped on it.

"You know drugs are illegal in Germany?" one said.

"I know the rules, I don't have any." I replied.

After going through my stuff for about 10 minutes, they just stopped and said "Danke." And left. Leaving my belongings scattered all over. Nice guys hehe.

Then just last night. On the night train from Vienna to Venice. You're supposed to be able to sleep on this train. No such luck for me. I left at 7:30 pm and was due to arrive in Verona at 7 am. With a brief 2 hour stop over in Venice, which entailed me sitting on my bag outside in the cold.

Anyways, at about 1:30 am we stopped somewhere. I could only assume it was Italy, because the last stop was a border town in Austria. I was just starting to doze off when three giant, military looking guys through my cabin door open. Startled I said "What the hell?"

"Italian Police, passport, now." the mean looking guy said.

They were dressed in civilian clothes, and it was the middle of the night. It was kind of sketchy, so naturally I asked to see one of their badges.

"Badges?" The mean looking guy said. He then muttered something in Italian, which I'm sure was something along the lines of "Badges... We don't need no stinkin' badges!"

So I gave up my passport, they didn't search my pack but they asked a lot of questions about what I was doing in Austria, and what I was going to do in Italy. What did I do to deserve this? hehe.

After they left, I had settled back down again when the ticket guy barges in. 30 Minutes later the train security guards do the same. So long story short I was up for 24 hours straight by the time I finally got to the hostel.

Verona is amazing. They have the 3rd largest coliseum in the world. It's called The Arena. Too much cool stuff, can't even begin to scratch the surface.

So for now I leave you.




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