It’s gonna be a close one. For a couple of reasons. The first one being timing and the next one being weight . Just like I horse rave I guess. I’m on the express oout to the airport. I should get out to the airport at 1610 then I’ve gotta get over to terminal 2 on the shuttle. My flights is at either 1710 or 1730, I cant remember. Hopefully it’s the latter.
I’m doing a trial on weight too. The Easy jet flights are no problems, they give you 20kg’s but my ryan air flight to Porto on Sunday only gives me 15. I guess I could leave some in Madrid. But yet I’m thinking of using ryan air to get from Paris to London and from Belfast to Edinbrough. So I’ve gotta get it under 15. My carry on bag is packed absolutely stuffed with all the toiletries I can fit. Plus as many clothes, my laptop and my sleeping bag. It’s nice and small but almost heavier then my bigger pack. But it doesn’t matter. They never weigh the day bags. In theory it could weigh a tonne as long as it’s small enough. I’ve also got my second set of jeans and my coat in the top of my pack ready to put on at the airport just before check in. Fingers crossed.
I set my alarm for 800 yesterday, I didn’t want to waste the day in bed. I jumped up and went out to the foyer to grab some breakfast. The guy tried to charge me 1 Euro for it. I just went along with it and sat down with it with my computer.
Man I’ve been slack with this Diary, it’s been a pretty rough couple of days pretty jam packed, but it’s not really any excuse. I’m trying to write stuff ASAP so I don’t forget… I cant even remember why I only wrote one paragraph in the last entry.
So after breaky I packed and left the hostel. 10 minutes later I was at the Tram stop and sat down and reached into my bag for LP. I couldn’t find it, it wasn’t in there. I started to panick. I must have left it in the Hostel I thought. It was dark when I’d packed. I went all the way back to the hostel. It wasn’t there!! I must have left it on the tram the previous night. In a comical way I was absolutely shattered!! Now I know exactly how Tom Hanks felt when he lost his volley ball Wilson in cast away…. Man that’s a good film
On the way back I also thought I knew a faster way to the tram stop. It wasn’t faster at all and I ended up walking half way (that’s and exaggeration) to the Train station. The tram took forever too. The doubling back for LP had totally chewed into my day. Adding almost an hour of screwing around.
Eventually I got to the student dorm, after a tram, train, tram ride, to get my bag. I was nervous about what I’d packed considering I’d packed after a fairly heavy night on the town. And if I’d left stuff in Brians room I wasn’t getting it back that’s for sure. Luckily my jacket was in there. I breathed a sigh of releif.
I spoke to Chrissy for a bit, and she assured me that there was storage lockers at Cardonna station, before I left to head in to explore Milan. For the 1.5 hours I had.
I got to Cardonna no problems but contrary to the information Chrissy had given me there was no lockers there. I had to go to sentral. I contemplated just leaving my pack on and walking around with it all day. But I wrote that idea off pretty quickly. Another metro ride later I was at sentral looking for the Left Baggage signs.
After asking a few people I eventually found it, to find myself at the back of a line. The sign said it was a 20 kg limit. I knew my bag was over it, but hoped that they’d have a little leeway. The guy in front of me put his bag on the scales and it weighed 21, he was waved through so I at least had some defence.
I put my pack on the scale. The whole thing was 24.5kg’s the desk man wasn’t having a bar of it. I know it’s over but letting the previous guy through indicated a grey area and I figured asking politely would suffice to get it through. Nup. He was stone cold and I ended up getting in a 5 minute fight with the stubborn I Tie.
I tried pointing out the man before and the desk man said “No no 21 is ok but 25 kg too much” I asked “What about 21.5 or 22 or 22.5 or 23 or 23.5 or 24, what is ok?” he wasn’t having a bar of it and tried to sell me some crap about a 500Euro fine he would get per kilo for accepting it. I knew he was blowing smoke, the whole lets fabricate a ridiculous number for the tourist thing. I cracked it in the end, un attached my day bag to the pack and through it on the bench. “Flight down, Flight down” the desk man said. “Flight down?” I enquired, “what the hell is that supposed to mean.
I was super pissed when I left, friggin Italians, they were p**** in Rome too, not tourist friendly at all, I knew it was over but I was polite, I asked nicely and it was obviously within his capability to wave it through.
I was starving so I did the Italian thing of Trying to pronounce what I want at a counter to get my ticket while the food is on the other side of the room, taking away the ability to just point and hold up a numerical amount of fingers. This didn’t work and it took me 3 minutes to order a coffee and a sandwich.
In a grumpy mood I walked down a set of stairs to find somewhere to eat when a pidgeon appeared out know where. It flew into, right into my face . Even the Italian pidgeons are ass holes. By this time I was Irate. I almost had a hissy fit, barely stopping my self from throwing my coffee and sandwich ant the nearest Gypsie kid.
I then stopped and realized how ridiculous I was being. I sat down and got stuck into my food half laughing half eating. I was refusing to let those Italian Jerks get to me. I was actually pretty annoyed at myself for letting them get to me like that.
In the previous 3 days apart from talking to Chrissy I hadn’t had a conversation with anyone, English native speaker or not. As a result the whole time I’d just been in my own thoughts. over thinking everything, that combined with the fatigue is what I reckon led me to my potential child abuse / sandwich assault.
I caught the metro to the Duomo. This is a church, the biggest Gothic church in the world. It was gigantic. I’d seen it on the Monday night. But being night it didn’t really sink in as to its incredibility. I sat in the square looking at it for a while before deciding to go in.
After emptying my bag to the security guards and getting waved over with the metal wand I walked in. I was kinda disappointed. It seems the gothic idea is to put all the thought into the exterior and very little (Comparitively) to the interiour. I mean it was nice, but it had nothing on the byzintine church in Venice.
It did however have the biggest stained glass window in the world at the back of it where at least a couple of hundred of normal sized glass windows were butted up against each other. It also had a really cool room right in the centre that you could look into. It was a round room sunken a little below ground level, only lit by candles in the centre was a rather large table it looked exactly like a sacrificial alter. I’m sure many a virginis had been put to death on that piece of slate.
I went out side and decided to do a little window shopping but fist I wanted something to drink, so I found what I thought was a back street where I hoped to find somewhere cheap. It was anything but cheap. I was soon walking past Louisse Vitton stores, Gucci, prada and a variety of super, super expensive fashion shops. I really enjoyed it. But couldn’t find a cheap drink.
Next, as I do, ordered a coffee. I found one place which was less then half the price of the others so I settled there. While I was ordering I felt a bump behind me. A quadraplegic had run into me and was holding up a ticket. Apparently for me to give to the barista. I did so, yet he looked at it and the receipt had already been torn, which is how the Italians know that you’ve already received what you paid for.
The quad started talking and it soon became apparent that he was a little mentally not all there too. But it seemed he was on good terms with the barista so he gave him a coffee anyway. The only downer was the dog that was sitting on his lap. I spent the next 2 minutes waiting for my coffee with the dog sniffing my ass. I was convinced it was trying to steal my wallet.
After the brew I climbed the alledged 250 stairs to the roof of the Duomo (I only counted 246) the view from up there was ok, Milan itself is nothing special. But the roof of the church did look really really cool and I walked around the top for close to 20 minutes.
Next I was off to the castle. This required a quick train ride and I got there 10 minutes later. Relatively to some of the other castles I’d seen this one was nothing special. But as soon as I walked inside the walls I was immediately approached by these black guys “handing out small rope bracelets. Drew had warned me about these guys. I said thanks and turned to walk away. Next thing I knew the guy was walking beside me with his hand out wanting money. I just put my headphoned on, but he persisted following me for 50 meters. To get rid of him I eventually just threw the bracelet things back at him and he left me alone.
Soon after I headed back to Sentral, it was going to be tight, I wanted to get the 3 o’clock train to the airport. I got on the metro to Sentral… and went the wrong way. I could pretty much kiss the 3 o’clock trian good by. Back at sentral I retrieved my back, throwing a few explicitries at the jerk who wouldn’t take my overweigh luggage, and headed to Cardonna where the express to the airport was leaving from. And as I thought Yep the three had left and I had to wait for the 330 train. Luckily it was already there just waiting, but I was able to repack my gear on the train.
I ended up stuffing as much as I could into my day bag and then put my jacket and second set of jeans in on top so I could put them on when I got to the airport.
The train got out the the airport att about 4. I spent ages waiting for the shuttle to terminal two, and then crammed on with many others. Where we waited for another 10 minutes while the driver had a cigarette.
I checked in. My bag only wieghed 13.5 kg’s. That means my back pack wieghs abit over 10 kg’s.
On a side note, there’s a few ways to fool the bag wight limit, a few that I’ve used are as follows.
- Have only half your bag resting on the scale, and the other half on the divider or the next part of the bag slide
- Discretely hold one of the staps with your lower hand. Or pull it up and tuck a strap around your belt loop to take off a few kg’s
- Wear way more then is necessarily needed clothes. Jeans and coats are heavy and can be easily worn on top of each other.
- Use a bag with straps. Some airline, like easy jet, wont put a back pack down the slide as the straps can get caught. This means you have to take it to a separate area away from where it gets weighed allowing you to pack extra stuff into it that you’ve left with a friend.
- Or my favourite a combination of the last two. Wear all you’re clothes and then when you have to take your bag to another location duck away and pack your excess clothes back into it. That way if they do decide your bag can go down the slide you just deal with your clothes on the flight.
Before going on the flight I wanted to grab some food to eat on it. I went to one place grabbed a bottle of water out of the fridge and then went and looked at the food. It was looking pretty average so I left. With the water I’d already crossed the line, so I just kept walking with my free water.