|Subject: An insight to Europe's areas around train stations|
If you travel through Europe you'll find a lot of common things among the diversity of each country.
Many big European towns now look alike, sharing the same ever-present smell of fries, and the rail station areas are usually where most immigrants gather and the red light entrepreneurs have their business. Of course even look-alikes are different in themselves, like the open layout of porn shop windows in Northern Europe and the modestly obscured ones you find travelling South, but it's undeniable some of those areas are a bit seedy. As for immigrants, Turks, Slavians, Albanians who gather in the vicinity of train stations (maybe because they feel the place like a sort of link to their homeland, a place where the travel back home starts) are mostly harmless, as they mind their own business, but to a foreign eye they can look suspicious or threatening. I still remember a Saturday afternoon inside the main hall of Munich station, looking like a Balkan station where the Orient Express was about to stop....On the other side, the Red Light areas are less threatening but more disturbing, according to one's sensitivity, and at night they could attract more unpleasant people. That said, if you overcome the queasiness of walking around in not the better part of town, you'll see you're pretty safe if you just behave with the usual cautiousness. The real danger in Europe (like in the USA, I'd say) lies in the neglected neighbourhoods of big, rich towns where poverty, drugs and violence rule.
Bye, Paolo Trieste, Italy