Ups and downs are a reality of life. Sometimes, they seem worse than they are and sometimes they happen when you’re traveling. When you hit a down and snag in the plan while traveling, getting a plan together and trying to stay calm is important.
Staying calm is also easier said than done and easier when you have food in your stomach.
My roommates and I learned this lesson, and to double check where our hostel is, when we traveled to Naples last weekend. The trip started out great, we got our train and made our way to ferry port so we could head over to the beautiful island of Ischia to enjoy the hot springs. Our first snag was not finding lunch near the hot spring. By the time we were heading back to Naples, we were pretty hungry. We did find a grocery store for snacks on the ferry. Grocery stores in Italy are plentiful and always have good snack food and water so keep that in mind if you study abroad here.
Once we were back in Naples, we got a taxi and thought we were heading to our hostel. We showed the taxi driver the address and thought everything was settled. Until 30 minutes later, we were not in front of a hostel and it turns out, our hostel is not in Naples, but in one of its suburbs Ercolano. After we talked to our cab driver and figured this out, because his English was not the best and my Italian is not the best but we found a way to communicate, we asked him to drive us to the train station in Naples so we could find dinner and figure out the best way to get to Ercolano and our hostel.
The cab was pretty quiet at that point, we were all pretty hungry and getting tired after an early train and full day in the sun. I was definitely freaking out a little and wondering what we were going to do. Our cab driver was very kind and gave us a few tips for how to get to Ercolano without paying a ridiculous amount of money for a taxi. We thanked him and once at the train station, quickly found a restaurant and asked if they had wifi. They promised us they would give us some, but they never actually did. We did have data we could use on our phones though so the wifi wasn’t the biggest deal, just another check on the “down” side on the day.
Naples does have some of the best pizza I will say. It’s where margherita pizza - marinara sauce, mozzarella, and basil - is from and it was delicious. Once we had some food in our stomachs, things seemed a bit better. The driver had told us about the Circumvesuviano, a metro like system that goes to all the towns around Mount Vesuvius. Being very close to the Naples train station, we were very close to the Cicrumvesuviano and thankfully got on towards Ercolano. Within 45 minutes we were at our hostel and very happy to be there.
So, our trip to Naples didn’t go exactly as planned. We had some highlights (that deserve their own blog post) and a little bit of a rough patch. But we worked together and were able to figure it out. Bumps in the road and hiccups happen. The best thing to do is to take a breath, find some food if you need it, and work together to figure it out. Things will turn out okay and are never really as bad as they might seem at first. So we’ve had our ups and downs, but we’ve also worked together and figured out how to problem solve.
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<p>I am a junior tourism and hospitality management major at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA. I have a passion for exploring and dreaming, which lead me to study abroad! You can probably find me with my nose in a book or cup of coffee, daydreaming about my next adventure or wishing I was in the woods. Or truthfully, wondering how the New York Rangers are doing back home. Studying abroad in Rome has been a dream of mine for years and I cannot wait to share the adventure!</p>