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On The Rails Again

Lugano, TI, Switzerland
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So on a cruise ship, a travel day is a "day at sea". What do you call a travel day on a train? Story.... stay on "track" Ed, lol. As bad as we hated to, we had to say good-bye to Verona and hit the rails again to begin to make our way around to the northwest back to Germany. We had decided that with the remaining time we had, we would make a lazy loop to the west to Milan, then head north through Switzerland before re-entering Germany. We had backpacks, guidebooks, Eurailpasses, no kids, pockets full of various currencies (sidenote 1: this was prior to the birth of the Euro, so we had Deutschmarks from Germany, Austrian Schillings, Italian Lira).....everything but enough time. (side note 2: at the time the Lira was about 2,000 per dollar, so we got a start when we got our hotel bill that said we owed something like 400,000. ) But it's funny how now we realize that those few things, were all we should have been aspiring to back then, instead of mortgages, cars, furniture, rug rats... the usual time sucking enemies of travel. (except the kids of course, we would just drag them along with us everywhere). So back to Verona, we took an early train west, with a vague plan to do lunch in Milan. Jumping off the train in Milan, we were not impressed. The train station was in a bleak, concrete business looking area. Somewhat seedy, and definitely not scenic. But we walked around hoping for something interesting, and grabbing lunch at a sad looking stand up sandwich place, before making a hasty retreat back to the train station for points north. From my trusty Thomas Cook train timetables, I calculated that we could be in Lucerne, Switzerland by late afternoon (about 3.5 hours). Lucerne was about the right distance and time away, sounded pretty in the guide book, and allowed us to enjoy a train ride to get there through some of the most dramatic and beautiful scenery on earth, through the Italian and Swiss Alps. What an afternoon....
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