I believe almost everyone on this experience has highlighted the fact that we had some very close calls in regards to our train travels. Yes, we did have multiple high-stress situations, but when I look back and think about our train rides, I think of one phrase: “La Dolce Vita”.
Dr. P introduced us to the phrase, “La Dolce Vita,” in Florence. It means “The Sweet Life”. In Florence, it was our goal to embrace the sweet life; we were to saunter through the streets, take the back routes, stop for gelato (multiple times per day), eat an abnormally long lunch, and relax in the Boboli Gardens (and maybe fall asleep… yes, my group did this). The point of “la dolce vita” was to allow us to relax and embrace the small things in order for us to gain a greater appreciation everything around us.
Along with the city of Florence, I believe that our train rides embraced “la dolce vita”. While the process of getting to each train might not have been the sweet life, the actual train rides themselves definitely allowed me to relax and enjoy the time we had on each day of travel.
There’s something about trains that speaks to my soul. I’m not sure I can pinpoint what that actually is, but I know that I love trains. A lot. So here’s a list of why I love trains and why they embody “La Dolce Vita”.
- I love that you do not have to arrive 2 hours early to the train station. You can merely walk up to the platform 5 minutes before your train is supposed to leave.
- I love calmness of the atmosphere of the train cabin once it has started moving. Train cars were quiet; there were very little disturbances.
- I love the views I got to see on each train ride. Whether it be the Italian countryside or the Swiss Alps, I was able to see some beautiful creation out of the windows of the train cars.
- I love the conversations that happened between CR9ers on the trains. Something about traveling on trains allowed us to embrace really unique conversations with one another.
- I love that I could sleep on trains. Really well. Trains were times of much needed rest and rejuvenation.
- I love that we were traveling as the locals travel. All around us, there were locals traveling between cities for work or for vacation. It was neat to embrace this unique European method of travel.
- I love that trains forced us to relax. On train rides, there was nothing we needed to accomplish or no where we needed to go. Rather, we could be present with no agenda or need to get to the next location on our list.
This is just a small list of why I loved our train travels. Trains are my favorite mode of transportation, and I love how they are so unique to Europe. I wouldn’t mind if the US started embracing trains again. They could create for more relaxed, enjoyable travel. La Dolce Vita.