So we booked ourselves onto a mid-morning train that ran directly from Napoli to Roma in just two hours, on a second class carriage. Once we got into the correct carriage, in an ideal world we would have continued to our seats.
Instead, this little man came up and asked to see our tickets. He was wearing a uniform and seemed to know what he was doing. He indicated, no, no, you shouldn't sit there, follow me. And proceeded to lead us to the first class carriages. And like foolish tourists, we confusedly followed, getting excited that we had just been upgraded to first class. Maybe this good luck was to make up for the poor luck of having our baggage destroyed? The first class carriages were little compartments, with 6 large comfortable seats in each one (imagine what kind of train carriage that Sherlock Holmes or the kids from Narnia would travel in).
Once the little man brought us to our destination, he started trying to mime something mysterious, and saying something in Italian. Which pretty much just confused us even more. He got tired of trying to communicate with us pretty quickly, and left sadly. We soon figured out that actually he was trying to ask for a tip for "upgrading" us to first class. And he wasn't actually related to the conductors or train company at all. He was just randomly upgrading all kinds of people into first class, then asking for tips. This resulted in the actual conductor struggling to find people the proper seats for the rest of our two hour train ride. Lucky for us, we got to stay in first class after we attempted to explain our predicament to the conductor- exchanging broken english for broken Italian. Unluckily for us, our first class compartment wasn't filled with people like Sherlock Holmes- instead it was filled with toddlers and their mothers stuffing breadsticks into their faces!
On the bright side, we did see some amazing Italian countryside fly by the train windows.
We arrived in Rome (Roma) around lunch time, and made our way to the sweeeet campsite we were staying in. We found this campsite about 40 minutes by underground-then-bus that was offering very good rates. They had cabins, tents, tenting sites, and R.V. camper sites. While our hostel in Napoli was filled with Americans and Brits, our campground was filled to the brim with Germans. I guess they love their bargain campgrounds?
The place we stayed was called Plus Camping Roma, and has fantastically cheap rates- about €13 a night, as opposed to €70 a night it cost to stay in a proper hostel in central Rome.
We stayed in a tiny cabin the size of 2 bunkbeds which was clean and new, but sadly we ended up with insane neighbours. We lived right next door to party-central; kids who started quaffing beer at 6pm and didn't stop until some late, late time. And then, most mysteriously of all, these same kids woke up at 8am and starting busting out loud dance club music. Who parties all night for 5 consecutive days, and manages to wake up fine and dandy at 8am every morning, ready to party more?
Apparently 16 year old German boys is the answer to that question.
So I guess our bargain discount camping ground came at the cost of limited sleep, but that didn't stop us from enjoying every second of every minute of Rome! which of course, I will try to fill you in on soon.
This is part of my series on the 9 days R. and I spent in travelling on the cheap in Italy across Naples and Rome- you can read about the whole trip here: