Vienna, I adore you. TrenItalia? Not so much

A month of studying abroad has flown by and I have fallen in love.

No, not with a person (I’ve already done that, hey hun) but with a city. On Thursday, September 29, my two friends and I set out for our weekend in Vienna, Austria.

Our weekend started early because yet again, TrenItalia wanted to screw me over.

It’s thursday morning and I’m in my history class when I hear the god awful words, “TrenItalia is going on strike”. I panic, this crap cannot be happening to me. Is it happening forever? Oh my god, oh my god…

As we make our way through Viterbo for a mini field trip, all I can think about it how excited I was to go to Vienna. Finally, I hear that TrenItalia going on strike that night from 9 p.m. till 9 p.m. the next day.

My friends and I agree that we should go to Rome that night and spend the night in a hotel near the airport.

Around 4:30 p.m., we are on our way to Rome and surprise, the train is actually moving. Can’t you just tell how much I love TrenItalia? Anywho, we arrive into Rome around 7:30 and try to get a taxi to take us to the hotel we had booked. Most of the drivers complain that it’s just too far away, but finally a nice gentleman agrees to drive us.

As we are inching along in the Rome traffic, my friend tries to call the hotel to tell them that we were going to be a bit late. No one answers. As we all exchange nervous looks, we joke about how the hotel is not going to be there. If only we knew.

After 20 minutes, the taxi driver pulls of the freeway and starts to make his way down a side street. Vespas zoom past us on the shoulder, car lights are blaring into my soul.

The taxi driver makes a right turn down a street where our hotel is supposed to be but as he makes his way down, the end of the street is blocked off.Our hotel is nowhere to be found. At this point, I am bouncing up and down, trying not to pee my pants. The taxi driver is muttering something in Italian and I start to panic.

He then tries to call this, “hotel” but no one is answering.

He takes us up this road that leads to the airport and tells us that there is a hotel that might have vacancy. We tell him to go there and as soon as he parks, I clamber my way out of the middle and power walk it to the front desk.

“Bagno?” I holler at the people behind the desk. Thankfully they do not question if I’m a guest or not and point me in the direction of the bathroom.

After a life saving trip to the bagno, I walk back to the lobby, a whole new woman. My friends have brought in my things and tell me that our taxi driver felt so bad for us that he only charged us 48 euros instead of 80 something. I thank the Roman gods and gather my things so that we can go to our room.

Being the patient and charming person I am, I agree that I will call Expedia and give them an earful about this so called hotel and how I (pretending to be the person who booked it) wants their money back.

After close to an hour and a half, the woman on the phone agrees to refund me for the money and to put a $50.00 voucher in my Expedia account.

At the time, this was great news, but it still hasn’t happened.

The weekend in Vienna that followed was one of the best I’ve had here. Absolutely gorgeous city. Go there, now.

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