Wednesday, 20 August 2014

24 - part three

While I was busy sleeping and not sleeping and trying to sleep, the Autoslaap train was showing off. By the time I was conscious in the morning the train had changed direction. On the previous day we'd been pulling the carriages that contained the cars. I woke up to find we were pushing them. We'd turned around. After my initial confusion I checked to make sure we were still heading for Italy. We were. Thankfully. 

When the rest of the family were awake we got dressed and turned our temporary bedroom back into a sitting room. We retrieved the table from under the seats and we were ready for breakfast. Breakfast Autoslaap style was "different". It arrived packaged in a cardboard box rather like airline food. There was a Capri Sun (orange), a white roll, a wholemeal (or maybe rye) roll, butter, pate, jam, cheese spread, ginger cake and chocolate spread. An interesting combination but we were hungry and we were out of alternatives. Our attendant also brought us a surprisingly tasty coffee that was pleasant enough that we didn't have to use the icky creamer that was provided. 

Once we'd cleared breakfast it was time for more whist, scenery-gazing and guessing where we were. I'd woken up in Milan and occasionally we passed somewhere else I recognised. It didn't take long at all before we arrived in Livorno at 11:30am on the dot, as per the itinerary. 

It was now that being almost being last to check-in was a disadvantage as we were one of the last to retrieve our car. That was the bad news. The good news was that the chipped windscreen was not shattered. 

While I was waiting for the car I had a chance to speak to some other travellers. Someone was only staying in Italy for just a week before returning. Someone else was doing the trip for their fourth year in a row. There were people with young children, people with teenagers and couples without children. Some people didn't like the hassle of flying, others didn't want to drive the long distance. Amongst the vehicles there was a Morgan and a BMW touring bike. 

As we were on our way I checked to see if we would repeat the experience. The consensus was "yes" but we haven't completed the return journey yet so I'll reserve judgement.

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