Leaving Italy and Arriving in Vienna (on the magical night train).

Rathaus Wien
Six days ago I lived in Milan. I was saying ciao and grazie and living off gelato and pizza and going for aperitivos.
this was my life no joke
Now I live in Vienna and have to speak German (which I really can't remember).

It's just weird.

I think maybe it's even weirder because I didn't even go home in between, nope it was straight from Milan to Vienna by night train baby! Travelling retro style.

Baasically there are 3 reasons why I decided to brave the night train.

1). Going to sleep and waking up in another city seemed pretty cool.
2).  I couldn't find a cheap direct flight (allitalia I don't think so)
3). Possibly the biggest reason: I had a stupid amount of luggage that would never have fit on a plane.

....yeah somehow I accumulated a lot of stuff during my 7 months in Italy.....

Thankfully various people came to my rescue, my landlord drove me to the station in my town and the wonderful Martina and her boyfriend accompanied me to the station in Milan after we had dinner together- my very own last supper (you know like the Da Vinci painting that's actually in Milan).

It was so so lovely to be able to spend my last evening with them and they made sure it was super Italian. We ate pasta e faigoli (her boyfriend is an amazing cook) and bread with olive oil and salt (of course). And an Italian meal wouldn't be complete without a classy glass of red wine now would it? We had Chianti, then also limoncello that was not because it was orange flavoured and then...Martina pulled out the secret wine.

Drum roll please....

A wine so secret that they don't even sell it on the shelves.

A wine only for people in the know (this is where I would do a wink by the way).

No. no, it's not some kind of Mafia thing before you think that, it's just that it's made from strawberry grapes (that's my best translation they told me uve fragole ) which for some reason makes it super strong and it's homemade so actually legally they can't sell it, but well of course they do anyway because it's Italy.

Drinking from some black market wine, without any label on the bottle felt pretty cool (and I'm still alive so it's all good). I also felt mildly tipsy after all that alcohol and in such a short space of time too because I'd told Martina I hadn't had time for a gelato earlier and she wouldn't let me leave Italy without having my last one.

So it was down the drink, speed to a geleteria, savour my last straciatella and salted caramel copetta and then suddenly I was boarding the train, trying to figure out where the hell my luggage was going to go in that tiny space. (Yeah I didn't realise it was going to be quite that small).

Before I melted into full blown panic, the guy I was sharing with (I'm pretty sure I clicked female only) said there were actually only going to be two of us for the journey, instead of four.

All I can say is thank goodness for that, otherwise I might have been sleeping on my suitcase.

A rather awkward situation averted, it was time to say goodbye...for reals.

It was emotional.
Can't you just come on the train with me Martina???
But then I was waving from the window and they were waving from the platform.

It was goodbye.

Then another friend Laura arrived, just in time to say goodbye.

So many goodbyes but it was so nice to have people to say goodbye to me just before I left.

Then the inevitable happened and the train doors were slammed shut and we began to chug out of the station.

I was alone, well apart from the stranger opposite me, who actually went straight to sleep.

I arranged my stuff, putting the "valuables" up on the alcove by the top bed, because well he didn't look dodgy but you never know...

I got ready for bed (wandering around a train in your pyjamas feels really strange) and feeling like some kind of monkey (those top bunks are a tricky business!) hoisted myself up to the bed, which was pretty high and pretty thin so I spent half the night terrified I was going to roll over the edge and essentially to my death (honestly it was really high!).

So I didn't really sleep that much, also because it's not the most peaceful nights sleep you're going to get. I also got woken up around 5am because my fellow passenger was getting off before me, but that did mean I had the whole carriage to myself when I woke up....ahh luxury.

Talking of luxury...

Breakfast in bed!

The steward comes and knocks on your door so you have enough time to wake up before your stop, and they bring you tea (which actually was pretty decent) and some little bread rolls with butter and marmalade. You kind of forget you just had the worst nights sleep and imagine you're in first class.

And of course, when your view is a magical snowy landscape, that makes you feel like you're in Narnia, there's no way you could be grumpy...even if its before 8 am in the morning.

So, in the end yes, my romanticized image of waking up in Austria did kind of happen.

But waking up and having to adjust to German was pretty super hard.

My head was (and still is) just filled with Italian. Every time I go to speak, it's the Italian word that pops up and almost comes out of my mouth. I really wish it would just get out of my head right now!! (In the nicest way possible).

Although (obviously) that means my Italian is fairly good now, I feel like I'm suddenly back to square one, struggling to communicate and barely understanding a thing because they're talking so fast.

I'm trying to remind myself of what it was like when I first arrived in Italy, but then again this is German which is way way harder so that feeling of I'm never going to understand, really feels like I'm never going to understand.

It doesn't help when you mix up the languages either. I tried to ask for a bag in the supermarket the other day, but I said Sache which means thing.In Italian bag is sachetto so, you can kind of understand my mistake right? I did wonder why she gave me an odd look - I thought she was just being all Viennese (because they are known to be quite aloof and snooty).

No she was just wondering what a weirdo I was. I guess she understood me though because I still got the bag.

And so begins the awkward encounters, smiling blankly at strangers who try to talk to you, the getting lost (although the Ubahn seems pretty simple enough) and the confusing and not to mention long trips in the supermarkets because I can't understand un cazzo (ah there I am , at it again!).

I just miss the comfort of a familiar place, knowing my way around, being comfortable with the language and knowing what the hell that it is I'm doing! I just feel a little lost at the moment, that's all. There are so many new things, the city, the German and even the job - I have never been a teacher before!
Missing these guys :'(
I guess I just need to be patient, things take time, I should know that by now. But starting again, for the second time in 7 months is really blimmen hard!

I guess I'll just have to distract myself with Wiener Schnitzel and Sachertorte.

Look at that beauty!


  1. Wow how exciting and what a view! Don't worry you will adjust just get stuck in there and make the most of it. Sooo proud of you. Love you lots, mum xxxxxx

  2. Good luck on your new adventure!! I miss Martina and Andrea's meals (and those two themselves as well I suppose...) Enjoy it and make the most of it before you get dragged back to England! xxxx


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