Well, I am not sure you can get lost these days while traveling with all the available technology including GPS and cell phones but it can certainly take you longer to get some place. I have traveled extensively these last three weeks and found myself lost on several occassions mostly when dealing with trains and subway connections.
In Berlin, RM and I arrived early to the massive and impressive new train station (see below) to find our departure gate to Munich; our next leg in our journey across Germany. We found Gate 2 as listed on the posted timetable, rambled around with our suitcases until we found the platform and waited for our train. A train arrived but RM and I were not sure how the reserved seating worked so we asked the conductor to explain. She quickly pointed out that our train had departed on time two platforms over at Gate 4. We nearly jumped on the wrong one headed to Frankfurt. We learned that trains in Germany change gates often even within the last few minutes before departure so you have to keep your eyes peeled to the electronic message board for the inevitable last minute changes. We regrouped to learn another train departed in an hour which would get us to Munich only two hours later than originally planned. We arrived at our new gate number, after using the extra time to explore the train station and sip a warming cappachino, to quickly assess that yet again the train had moved two gates over. I was beginning to see a pattern here. I was glad we had fortuiously purchased open tickets at a slightly higher price allowing us to change departure times without penalty.
While Berlin is easier to get lost in while walking, both Munich and Trier are organized in a nice, neat grid system so we found walking the cities very straight forward. Berlin was two cities for so long that sometimes connections are still wonky but we managed the local commuter train out to Potsdam and back with relative ease. We got off one stop too early but quickly regrouped and jumped on the next train that came along after confirming our decision with the platform attendant.
From Munich to Trier, we once again traveled by train. While nearly missing the train out of Munich, it departed 10 minutes earlier than we expected, we navigated an Olympic record breaking transfer pace in Mannheim, that required us to race up and down flights of ancient stairs and across slick platforms with our bulky luggage because the first train was slightly late and the transfer time absurd (five minutes). We made it with seconds to spare with our calf muscles burning and RM’s hair on fire. Of course, we sat in someone else’s reserved seats, which required us to move two stops later after we had nicely organized our travel accoutrements but we eventually settled into a nice journey just a few seats over. Sigh.
Travel tests our navigation skills and I prefer to do it in pairs. RM and I were lost, and found, all over Germany and back again but we were always together just arriving a bit later than intended.