I love traveling in Europe by train.
There are many reasons:
-First of all the Europeans "do trains" so much better than we do.
-Secondly, you get to see so much of the countryside without worrying about navigating or traffic.
-Then there's the fact that most of us at one time or another, dreamed of "backpacking through Europe" with a Eurail Pass. I never got to do it, but I certainly wanted to.
-Several great movies shot in Europe have shown us great scenes from train stations.
-Lastly, I love the stations themselves. Many of the bigger ones have dramatic canopies made of glass and steel.
I took this photo at the train station in Milan, while waiting for a train to Venice.
These stations and their structures often go unappreciated, because the passengers tend to rush in and out while worrying about their luggage, children, wallets, and of course, finding the right train. When you stop and look around, you'll find that many of them can be a photographer's dream. In many cases they are a great union of form and function, and for the traveler, they are often the first and/or last encounter with the city they represent.
The next time you travel by train in Europe, take a moment to appreciate the departure point.
Heck! take a picture and send it to me - I'd love to see it.
That canopy is about the only attractive thing about the train station in Milan. At least it lets in some light.
The rest is a huge, ugly, tribute to Fascisim. I'm sure you saw the big scar on the wall at the end of the tracks. What political statement do you think once hung there? The whole place is an atrocious monstrosity, Mussolini's crown jewel. It's a symbol of oppression, not a place of beauty. Unfortunately, the construction cranes that surround it are not tearing it down, but renovating parts of it. I guess it's good for the world to have a reminder.
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