Our ship arrived in Rome October 21. On this trip, I met some local people who helped me a lot, so I didn’t get too lost transferring between buses and trains in the end. Don’t be afraid to politely ask for directions, recommendations — it’s great if you can learn some phrases in the language of the country you’re visiting. If not, my expressive sign language and their willingness to help made for real progress; and me, very grateful to the wonderful Italian locals I met.

Like most of the elderly passengers I met on the cruise ship, the typical means of locomotion in these local towns is to walk. So I walked by myself, which is good exercise for me anyway, after eating cruise buffets nonstop everyday, plus mid-day snacks (tacos, finger sandwiches, etc.) thrown in for good measure. On the fifth day we made it to Napoli, where weather-wise we had the worst of the trip. Rain poured down so hard, but fortunately by the time we got to Rome it was only cloudy and dry. I stayed in a place near the airport, which made it a non touristy, affordable area that was also easy to train into the town center. Walking through the town (I can’t oversell the rewards of walking in a foreign country), I saw these steps on a hillside where an artist had painted a female head. Anyone know what it represents or who made it? Not sure where I was when I took the snap!


Staircase art!

I tried to choose a cruise that doesn’t sail at sea for more than 2 days. Some routes sail at sea for even up to 3 days, but that amounts to too much time on the ship. This cruise to the Greek islands was only at sea for one day and that was already too much. I want to see places and not just hang around on the ship. I actually heard some of the passengers on my cruise only stay on the ship (just enjoying the food, movies, game room, etc.) and never went out to the ports! I want to visit new places, even if only for six hours and all I do is walk and bus/train to local streets =)

~ Kai-ling

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