I boarded my train departing for Wien and while stuffing my face with bread and cheese two ladies came into my compartment. They were both French but decided to live in Venice. I explained that it seems like a really tough place to reside, but they insisted that being in such a city made every day as a dream, and as if they were a part of its storied history. For me, the tourists alone would make it impossible.
These two ladies had a lot of of personality and were great to talk to. One of them was a reputable fashion designer and the other retired from years of working with Air France. The airport lady mentioned that she though Americans were great people, very genuine. One of the best things she said was that when am American touches Europe, it is if they lose their a certain aspect of their American mentality. I actually agree with this completely.
Into the cabin came a guy from India and a Chinese girl that we were able to draw into the conversation as well. Things were going great until about three hours in when the girl realized she was without her wallet. She knew that she had it on the train platform just before getting on, so she either dropped it or had it picked off of her. That changed the mood of the carriage markedly, but really we were powerless to do anything to help. She lost her credit cards and about 500 euros. Once the frantic and desperate rummage through her belongings turned up nothing, we started to sleep.
The guy and girl got off in Salzburg, so for the last several hours it was just me and the ladies. We transformers the six seats into three beds and passed right out. The room was ice cold though and at some point the fashion designer woke me to ask if she could use me for my body heat. This was certainty absurd, but after all our talking not so unexpected of her, so I said sure and fell back asleep with her butted right up next to me.
We exchanged details and then parted ways in the morning. They were off to their accommodation, and I was needed to find some. I walked to a hostel but was a bit annoyed to find their rock-up rate to be ten euros higher than what they posted online online. I decided to pass and check out some other options. Another was 22, but when I got to the last option that was only 15, making it the obvious choice. After I got checked in, it was time to hit the town.
This picture is the only memory I have of these two. We exchanged emails though, and she has assured me a place to stay in either her Brittany or Venice home.