Nice long day. Started out kind of rough. I woke up early so I could try to make th 8:25 train to Como, but I took too long eating breakfast at the hostel so I dragged a little before leaving for the train station at about 8:45. The plan at this point was to catch the 9:25 train, but unfortunately, I left my passport in my backpack and so I had to turn around and go back to the hostel to get it. You would think that I would have this thing figured out by the third time around, but no. This time, my Eurail train time-table book was out of date and the 10:25 train that I thought I was going to get on was non-existant and I had to catch the 11:25... so I was only 4 hours late. Not too bad a start. Already, at 11, it was SOO warm outside. I'd say it was close to 70. I was not only hot in my peacoat, but I was hot in my vest. My legs were hot because my boots were a double layer on my jeans... It was AWESOME!
So the train was quick and not too exciting. Northern Italy looked so much like Green Country in the winter... aka, not green. It was really pretty, but in homey kind of way. Everything was brown or, at most, a yellowy shade of light green. The trees were all bare, which was great and it made me feel nice to know that Tulsa Co. can be as pretty as Italy :)
I got off the train in Como and wasn't really sure where to go. I met a nice British set of couples who were equally as lost and they let me walk with them down to the lake. I walked around the lake for about an hour and then bought a sandwich at a local restaurant and sat on the wake break and ate and watched kids feed the seagulls. After this I walked around to the Como Duomo (Ha!) and snapped some shots before grabbing some Gelato for the road and heading back up to the train station to head off to Lugano, Switzerland.
Half way to Lugano, the train stopped and turned off, and I was kind of scared that I had gotten on the wrong train. After sitting for a couple minutes (and noticing that no one else was getting on or off) a group of 4 Swiss Border Patrollmen with their nice big machine guns boarded the car and walked right towards me, stopped, smiled, said bonjour and then continued walking (at this point, when they didn't check my passport, I was a little perturbed since I went home to get it). From here, the train was absolutely stunning. We started driving around the south side of Lago Lugano and crossed it at one point and the city was on the bank with the Alps in the background. It was a perfectly clear day and so amazing. Once I got off the train, the hike down to the water was only about 15 minutes (but straight downhill... woohoo for the way back up). I walked down and strolled along the outside of the lake (which is MUCH larger than Como) and down to this little park that lind one side of it between the city and the marina.
First off, Andre, thank you for convincing me to come here, because I never would have stopped here if not for your recommendation. Second off, this was the most perfect place I have ever been. There was absolutely nothing between me and the most beautiful views in the world. I walked around the lake for about an hour before settling on a spot to watch the sunset. I thought about getting a picnic dinner, but... I didn't have any swiss franks to buy food with so I couldn't. I found a spot near the marina and parked it. I sat there for over 2 hours just watching the birds, the waves and the sun. I had a perfect view of the alps, the hills on the other side of the lake, the lake and the sunset. I was also graced by a Yellow Lab puppy at one point with no owner (she eventually showed up a couple minutes later mumbling in Swiss and cursing at the puppy for leaving her) but I really enjoyed playing mommy to the abandoned puppy. I named him Lugo. I don't think that means anything, but that was his name. Possibly a combination of Lugano and Lago. Anyways, he was precious. I almost completely exhausted the battery on my iPod as well. I sat and watched the whole sunset and then walked slowly back up to the train station to catch the 7:05 train back to Milano.
The train was uneventful save the part where the Swiss border patrol came and checked passports and then the Italian border patrol came and checked passports and interogated us about what we were doing and exactly what was in each of our bags (He thought it was weird that my camera case was in the compartment and proceeded to take it apart).
I got back to the hostel and had thought I could go to the supermarket to get dinner, but it was closed so me and Mido (the hostel owner) and two of his friends as well as another girl in the hostel tonight, Emily, went to eat at this cute little pizzaria near here. I got a great pizza with mushrooms, mozzarella, mascapone, tomatoes and peppers.
Tomorrow I catch a plane to Prague and start a new few days of craziness. Can't wait!!