Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Il biglietto del treno

Dov’e’ la stazione?...Vorrei un biglietto a San Bonifacio, per favore… Grazie!
These few simple phrases are all you need to purchase your train ticket from Rome. Supposedly; in theory.

Apparently in reality you need these few phrases, three credit cards, the numbers to all the credit card hotlines, and authorization to use your card “over-seas” even though you’re not really over-seas but actually at home in your pjs trying to purchase your train ticket from an Italian based website. Wow, simple process turned complicated just because of commerce between two countries.

This is a lot of trouble to assure that I don’t get “stuck” in Rome on my first night in Italy, because I can't say that being stuck in Rome, Italy for a night would be all that bad. But I’m a planner. I like to have my plan of action and I would like for it to move smoothly. Therefore, I want to purchase my ticket before I arrive in Italy. Therefore, I spent the last three days trying multiple credit cards, multiple times in an attempt to find JUST ONE CARD that would work. Honestly, I’m surprised my card companies haven’t shut me down yet with as many combinations and routes as I have tried to get the site to say, “Payment accepted. Reservation made.” Instead all I got was a very consistent “Payment denied,” and a couple of emails to my credit card companies’ help desks sitting out there in email-limbo.

I’m sure this is just the first in the long line of frustrations I’ll be facing for my trip. A few instances from my trip to Costa Rica are starting to prick at the edges of my brain. Was that trip not all butterflies and beaches as I remember it to be? Ohhhhhh yea, there were just a few, shall we say, less-than-desirable moments. But I survived, and I would never change my experiences there for the world. I learned a lot about myself on that trip, and I’m sure I’ll learn even more quirky things about myself on this one. I just have to remember that being out of my comfort zone comes with difficulties, choices, and consequences. Most of all I have to remind myself that I thrive on being out of my comfort zone. And over the next month or so before I leave, while I’m taking care of all the last minute details and finalizing plans/budgets, I must remember to breathe, relax, make lists, and repeat my mantra: “I’m going to Italy…I’m going to Italy…I’m going to Italy…”

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