Spring Break Part 5: A Ferry, A Train Station, and a Full Hostel- Our Three Nights without a bed

*Please note: This post was first published on the blog I kept in 2011 while studying abroad*

So this should be a shorter post than the last few since it mostly involves the three nights between Rome and Athens which were spent playing cards or trying to sleep.

Because we had to catch a train at 5:45am from Rome to Ancona, we pulled an all-nighter in the train station where we didn’t even try to sleep. Instead we played cards from about 12:00 am until we were allowed to get on our train at about 5:00 am. I fell asleep pretty soon after the train started to move. Every now and then I would wake up and saw that we were traveling through really beautiful, green hills on the way to Ancona, the port town where we would catch out ferry.

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The view from the train to Ancona

In Ancona we had no idea where to go once we reached the port. In broken English, one of the security people told us how to take a bus to where we could check-in and get our ferry tickets. Once we attained out tickets, we wandered around Ancona which is really a charming town once you get away from the port. We had hoped to buy groceries for the 22 hour ferry ride but none of us had thought ahead to the fact that we would be getting on the ferry on Easter Sunday. Since it was Europe all the stores were closed except a few convenience shops where we were able to buy small things like yogurt and chips.

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Ancona

On the ferry, we felt a bit out of place since it was a lot like a floating hotel and we hadn’t reserved a room with beds. Fortunately, we found the airline-style seats.  Even though we hadn’t paid for them, we were able to use them to sit and sleep (sort of) since there were a lot of vacant seats. Food was not as overpriced in the economy restaurant as we had expected so I was able to get a giant plate of spaghetti for a decent price.

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Our ferry!

The next day we arrived in Patra, Greece at about 2:00 or 3:00. We bought bus tickets and prepared ourselves for a three hour bus ride to Athens. Unfortunately traffic and construction turned our ride into a five hour ride and we didn’t reach Athens until 9:00pm. Luckily there was a free bus to take us to the part of Athens where our hostel was (the bad part of Athens by-the-way). However, when we arrived at our hostel the owner told us he had overbooked the hostel and we would not have rooms until 3:30 am. The night worker felt sorry for us and bought us McDonald’s to eat. We then all used the computer to check email and Facebook.  I then fell unconscious on mattress they had laid out for us in the lobby of the hostel. We finally got a room at 5:30 am (since only 3/4 girls had checked out at 3:30am from the room we were originally supposed to take) and slept until noon.

Those three days were definitely an adventure that we won’t likely ever forget.

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