The fastest way to get from Frankfurt to Rome is to fly. Less than two hours total as a matter of fact. Driving would take a significantly longer time. Now lets say you are parents of an autistic child of just under two. The kind of child who is not terribly verbal and certainly does not tolerate being restrained or held. Now imagine said child being strapped to an adult in a plane. As you can probably guess he was not happy and found enough voice to wail and cry till he finally exhausted himself which took a good 45 minutes.
Did I mention he was with his parents in the row behind me? His mother finally got up and walked with him. She swamped seats with a friend in the bulkhead row so I had two husbands behind me while business class was serenaded by his cries. Just in case you were wondering, these were not a temper tantrum cry but more like wounded animal howls. I felt even more sorry for the child when I heard the dad say they should have listened to the doctor but his wife believed all drugs were bad. And I am thinking that too many meds may not be good, but being hoarse from crying isn’t good for him either.
I was certain the woman had no brains when she got up again with the howling child just as we began the final approach to Rome airport. and argued with the stewardess who literally threw her back in her seat and scrambled back into her own right before what was not exactly a smooth touch down. Now, the toddler looked clean and well nourished. His mother had patience and handled him with love. I just wish that she had some common sense.
The rest of the trip was easey-peasy. The day started off wonderfully with a bit of rain. Now you might think that is insane, but consider the following: it is a lovely hike to the train station. Dragging my suitcase through puddles is not a great way to start a journey. If is raining, I take a taxi since the way to the Strassenbahn involves unpaved muddy paths. Taking a taxi gives me back 30 minutes in which to knit.
Of course, said rain stopped a good hour before I was set to leave which meant I walked after all. Arriving in time to take the Regional Train rather than the S-Bahn and found a single seat on the connecting train in Mannheim. George’s plan was early from New York, but his luggage took forever. We got to spend a short bit of time together before he was off to catch his train and I was back to the lounge (did I mention that there was actually a locker in the lounge? Meant that I could leave my things on the correct side of security when headed back to catch my flight!)
My luggage arrived promptly for Italy, I walked to the train terminus, caught my train, changed at Roma Ostiene and arrive in Civitavecchia just as the huge red sun was setting. It was a nice stroll to the same hotel where I stayed in Jan complete with included wifi and breakfast. What more can I say?