Towns / Cities Visited: 157
Countries Visited: 29
Steps Taken Today: 19,977
Steps Taken Around the World: 4,006,790
Our morning began fairly early, as we were heading out of Naples to the town of Ercolano for our day’s adventure. Shovelling in a little breakfast we headed to the nearby train station, where we should have been able to easily hop on a train on the Salerno line and make the 30–40 minute journey to our destination. Of course, that is in no way what actually happened because we were relying on the Italian public transport system to function correctly, and as I’m sure you have gathered from our trip so far, that isn’t exactly Italy’s strong suit.
So, what did actually happen? Well, we arrived at the station, bought tickets from the machine, and headed to the platform. So far so good. We waited, and despite the displays showing trains running as per usual, they were not, in fact, doing that, but instead only coming sporadically because there was seemingly an issue somewhere down the line. Concerned that we would miss out on fulfilling our plans, we searched for an employee to try and gauge the situation and come up with a new plan, but we could only track down one, and they spoke just enough English to inform us that our desired train wasn’t running. Stepping back out onto the street we did a quick bit of research and tried to come up with a contingency plan. We discovered there was a bus which could get us there, but it would take ages to do so. In the end, we decided on walking to the main train station to see if we could have any luck with trains there, and if not, at least find an English-speaking customer service officer to provide us with a refund for our tickets before we settled on taking the bus.
Just a casual walk to the main station right; nice and easy. Yeah, except that’s not how this morning was going. Naturally, there was some sort of mass protest going on, no idea what for, but it was complete with yelling, banners, and flares. As a result, large swathes of the city were sitting in gridlock, all idling cars and constant honking. Eventually, we managed to make it through the ruckus only to duck into a main station in an almost identical version of bedlam. Weaving our way through the throng of dishevelled commuters, we managed to find some station staff, but they were lacking in useful information and simply sent us downstairs. Finding some more staff down there, we were…