(Note: This image isn’t of New Generation Hostel Urban – it’s just a general hostel.)
The title had you intrigued, right? In this post I will discuss my uncomfortable first experience at a hostel. Please check out my previous posts on arriving to Milan and getting to your hostel and on my fall itinerary for this expedition.
Foot Fetish Man
If you’ve checked my past post, you’ll know that I stayed at New Generation Hostel Urban in Milan, Italy. I initially reserved a room for 16 beds, but I was placed in a room with only 4 beds. After a quick shower, my ‘roommate’ came in and we introduced ourselves. We’ll call him Emilio (not his real name). His English was a bit choppy. As we talked, the first thing he decided to inform me was that he has a foot fetish and makes foot fetish videos for money. My initial thought was “this is about to be either an interesting or an uncomfortable way to start off my Eurotrip”.
I told him I was here on vacation from San Francisco and that I wanted to check out Milan, and he asked to give me a tour cause he knew the place. I agreed, and we took the Metro over to the Duomo, a beautiful Italian cathedral church.
In front of the Duomo!
I took an obligatory picture in front of the Duomo, and then we went to the McDonald’s located across from the attraction (I know, what a great first meal in Milan). I’ve been to Italy before and something I’ve noticed is: the McDonald’s in Italy always seems to be super nice. I found it hilarious and amazing that you could order beer at this wonderful place:
They serve beer at McDonald’s?!
I purchased a hamburger, fries, and coke meal for $10…definitely a bit pricey for a McDonald’s. Emilio and I talked some more, and I noticed he kept trying to hide some information about himself. It was very peculiar, and after some investigating, he ended up telling me that he’s a ‘sex slave’. I didn’t even understand what that meant. So he elaborates saying that he pleasures himself by going to dungeons of elite dominatrices who slap and punish him. He was in Milan mainly to pleasure himself at these dungeons, because apparently the dominatrix scene in Milan is large and more professional. I was a bit taken back, but I actually have a friend who’s a dominatrix so I didn’t judge. I told him about my friend and he kept prodding to get her full name to add her on Facebook. That was already annoying and uncomfortable for me.
We walked through the rainy streets of Milan, visiting the gorgeous Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the world’s oldest shopping malls decked out with name brand stores like Prada and Louis Vuitton. Emilio told me even more strange things like “If a girl were walking barefoot on rained down cement ground, I would still suck on her toes.” I did NOT know what to say…
We stopped at a supermarket where we picked up large bottles of water for $1 each. Something to note: in Italy and much of Europe, free tap water is not provided with your meal.
The Aperitivo Experience!
After picking up water, we headed out for dinner to a nearby aperitivo. It wasn’t a well-known place, just a spot that the nearby college students would frequent. I had NO idea about the concept of aperitivos. With aperitivo restaurants, you can purchase a drink for a flat rate which basically grants you a ticket to their buffet. You can imagine how happy I was to find out that I could buy my Hoegaarden beer for $4 and eat their Italian appetizers at no cost. I remember asking in disbelief at the cash register, “wait so…this is all for free?”. Okay, this specific aperitivo wasn’t even well known but I was just happy to learn about this interesting notion.
Such a healthy aperitivo meal…
Emilio started prodding me for my Facebook page. I didn’t want to provide him with my details but luckily I had two pages, one for my music – so I let him add me on my more ‘public’ page to be nice.
When Things Got Weirder…
We went back to the hostel, and I sat in my lower bunk bed next to the right wall of the room while I responded to some messages on my phone using the hostel’s Wi-Fi. Emilio’s bed was across from mine next to the left wall, a few feet apart from mine. He proceeded to walk over and ask me, “Can I kiss your shoes?” My shoes were right next to my bed. I was definitely uncomfortable and I said “No”, but he still did it anyway which made me more upset. At least I wasn’t wearing them…
Emilio walks over to his locker and pulls out this blonde, female wig and wears it, telling me that it was one of the props he uses for his foot fetish videos. Apparently, sometimes the girl or guy puts it on to try to hide their identity in the video… It was already really creepy seeing him in a blonde wig. And then he comes over and asks, “Can I massage your feet?” I pretty much had enough already and told him sternly, “No please do not do that. This makes me uncomfortable.”
After some awkwardness, we went to sleep. But because I felt so uneasy, I wore socks to sleep and locked my shoes/flip flops in my locker.
An Awkward Morning
So to top off this story, I woke up the next morning and saw Emilio awake in the room. I thought to myself “I am not hanging out with him today.” More awkward silences later, he asked me if I wanted to see a magic trick. I replied, “Sure”, and he pulls out a deck of cards and shows me a trick. Afterwards, he asked to do another trick, in which he takes out a plastic bag and tells me to put my socks in. I basically replied, “No?” And he proceeds to grab one of my socks from my bed, telling me the trick was that I would get 2 new socks from his bag. I asked him to return my sock and asked him – “Did you purchase new socks for this?!” He had gone out that morning to play this trick on me in hopes of getting my own socks. In disbelief, I told him that I was going to leave and walk around Milan myself and explore.
Something to Note: If you’re ever in an uncomfortable situation like this, ask the hotel manager for a room switch. In my case I was only staying 2 nights so I figured I could stick it out as he was actually a nice guy and he hadn’t done anything exactly harmful towards me. In hindsight though, I probably should have switched rooms.
Hostels can go either way – I definitely got unlucky with this experience, but I still found it an experience to remember! I hope he doesn’t happen to read this post. But anyway, I hope you enjoyed my story and again, leave a comment – we’d love to hear from you!