I took the train from Rome to Brindisi, which is a place no one should ever go unless they are planning to ferry to Greece (my reasoning for going). Brindisi isn’t the most “happening” of Italian cities; it’s actually quite small and there’s not a ton to do within the city but shop around for stripe-y nautical cardigans (check!) and eat gelato (check, check!).
On my first day in Brindisi, I made the mistake of thinking there were non-gelato/non-cardigan-related sights to be seen. I bought a couple of bus tickets (I got to practice some of the only Italian words I know to purchase said tickets!) and boarded a bus I thought would take me to the city center, only to realize there really isn’t a city center. At one point of the bus ride, though, I was the bus’s only passenger, which wasn’t too unsettling until the bus driver pulled over next to a field, stepped off the bus, and disappeared into thin air. I sat there for several minutes before beginning to freak out a little. I had been texting my sister, Jessica, off and on that afternoon and by this point, I was so concerned that I actually called her. Yes, I made a call from Italy to the U.S. …from my cell phone. I don’t know what I was expecting her to do about my situation; I guess I just wanted someone to know that I was on a bus in the middle of nowhere, Italy, in the event that, like the bus driver, I, too, vanish into thin air.
Soon enough, the bus driver returned to the driver’s seat and we went about our merry little way (as it happened, he just needed a bathroom break). My sister later told me, “Please think twice next time before calling me to let me know you think you’re about to be murdered on the side of a random road in Italy. That was very scary for me.”
Duly noted, sister. Duly noted.
I later met a couple of other lone travelers at the hostel – an Australian girl and an Irish guy – who were really friendly. We went to the beach together one day, just the three of us, where I took the above photo of my sandy, tan-lined feet. It is also worth noting that I ate about a million Kinder Happy Hippos during this outing (my favorite of all favorite treats!). The three of us had gone to a supermarket before heading to the beach; I think they were a little confused when we all met up at the check-out counter, their baskets filled with meats, cheeses, bread and soft drinks, mine filled with Happy Hippos and water bottles.
Later that day, we returned to the hostel, sleepy and all tuckered out. The hostel manager ordered us pizzas (which I naively assumed were on the house – don’t ask why). Now, I don’t know how many times I’ve eaten pizza in Italy…let’s just say lots. Maybe I’ll eventually contradict myself with this statement but I want to say the pizza I ate in this hostel was the best pizza I’ll ever eat in my life.
Oh, and you want to know the most exciting part about that pizza? The hostel manager ordered the three of us a large pizza each. And I ate the whole thing by myself.
A large pizza, a bag of Happy Hippos and a day at he beach? Maybe Brindisi’s not so bad after all…