12:00 pm

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[Milan, ITALY]

Bustling Milan station.
Their eyes are already
Searching our pockets.

We arrive at Milan station and head off to buy a ticket for the trip to Cinque Terre. We are immediately set upon by a slick looking Italian with eyes that can't stop still -- one of many suspicious characters lurking about that we can see. He offers in halting English to help us purchase our ticket. He is wily enough that before we know it, we have let him lead us to a ticket machine to go through the steps to purchase a ticket. It's like a scene from a Dickens novel. I'm looking down to see if my fob watch or silk handkerchief is on show! Someone bumps into me ... purposefully I feel. We decide to escape this Italian Fagan's clutches -- no harm done. Learning in the process how to get a ticket from the machine. And learning too that pick-pocketing is alive and well in Italian train stations.

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