Castel di Sangro to Sulmona and back to Rome

06.18.2010

Gianni came and picked me up at the apartment this morning and took me to the bus station.  My plan was to take the bus to Sulmona, arriving at 9:55a, then catch a train at 10:25a to Rome.  I knew there was a possibility of missing the train because the station was on the other end of town, but I thought I would try anyways.

I arrived in Sulmona and asked a man how to get to the train station.  He gave me directions and kind of shook his head when I told him I was going to walk.  It’s only 5km.  I did that in an hour on a good day on the Camino!  This also meant I was definitely going to miss the train so I was in no hurry to get there.

I continued walking along and asked another man where the train station was and he was trying to get me to take the bus instead of walk.  He got frustrated with me because all I wanted to know was what direction the train station was, I  didn’t care that there was a bus.  I don’t know why it is so difficult for people to understand I just want to walk!  There were some women just down the street who I asked and they directed me down a street that goes through the main part of the old city of Sulmona.  Eventually I found the tourist office.  I stopped in to get a map and see if I was heading in the right direction.  I ended up having a great conversation with the women running the office and excellent directions to the train station.

I arrived at the train station shortly after 11a, obviously having missed the train to Rome.  When I bought my ticket, the man wanted to make sure I realized it didn’t leave until after 3p, to which I responded with an emphatic “Si!”.  I had hoped they had luggage storage so I could have stored my bag, but they didn’t.  I also had a bottle of sherry liqueur Gianni had given me in the morning that I was trying to figure out what to do with.  It was in a bag, but nothing I could leave unless it was in a secure place.  So, I decided to camp out at the bus station for four hours.  This is one of the down sides to traveling solo.  I was really disappointed because I had wanted to take the bus back into Sulmona to explore the city a bit.  Next time, I guess.

Around 2p, I got questioned by the local police.  I thought that was fun.  They wanted to see my passport, know how long I had been in Italy, where I had arrived, and all that good stuff.  They must have thought I was some security threat or something!  Actually, I think they were making sure there wasn’t any riff-raff staying in town for the Pope’s visit in July.

I finally caught the train, arrived back in Rome, and went back to the hostel I had stayed at previously.  I checked back in and hung out for the rest of the night.  I think it was close to 7p by the time I got there.  At least now I know where I am going!