|We’re getting the knack of train travel in Italy/Sicily. After our Boot and Ball Tour ended yesterday, we treated ourselves to a bit of a sleep in.... about 30mins our train was not due to depart until 10am so extra 30min lie in won’t hurt lol.
Their intercity trains are quite snazzy. The one we got today had a full table between the seats which included power points for charging, you won’t find that on any Newcastle to Sydney trains. We had to change trains in Messina, which we were prepared for however as we got closer, the announcements at each stop stated our train was 10min then 11min then 12min late... we only had 12min to change trains!!! We slowly pulled into Messina, struggling to get our cases down the steep steps to the platform then realising we had no idea which platform our next train was on. Luckily some others were looking for the same train as they too were headed for Taormina. We disembarked at platform 10... our next train was to leave from platform 1... we had about 3min to get there... will we make it? We had to go down a flight of stairs (naturally) to get to the other platforms. I got to the bottom of the stairs with the others, I turn around and Karen is still at about the 3rd step down, inching her way ever so slowly. With this, I had accepted that we may not make the train... apparently Karen was thinking the same. But luck was in our side. The train was still there, we hopped in with only a minute to spare before it pulled out of the station headed for Taormina (we hoped).
The next part of the adventure was getting from the station to our hotel by “taxi”. You never have to wait long as there’s always plenty waiting at the taxi stands. We decided to take the first one, too tired to source out any other mode of transport. The driver explained our hotel is high up above Taormina so he pulls out turning left on the road.. the sign directly in front indicated Taormina was to our right... here we go again. The girls have been duped. I’m mumbling a commentary of being taken on the scenic route, that this is a repeat of the Vatican all over and that we’ve been had. After a lot of hill climbing, dodging on coming traffic, cornering hair pin turns on what feels like two wheels we come to a stop out front of a gate. The driver indicates this is our hotel but he can’t take us down the driveway, we’ll have to walk it. So here we are at the top of a fairly steep driveway with all our luggage, feeling hungry and tired. We take our first step and off rolls our suitcases, we feel like we’re almost at a run to keep up (though I was tempted to let mine go and meet it at the fence at the end of the driveway).
Finally we arrived at Jim’s place and we must give him credit for the decor and views.