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Friday, September 30, 2005

Train: Hamburg - Berlin

At least last night there was silence in the room next door. Perhaps having a word to Lin did the trick.

I realise I've been remiss to actually show you the accomodations - now my room wasn't the flashiest, the bathroom was minute and even with the nut next door, it's a very friendly place and in a great position for touring Hamburg. It's on a pedestrian only strip so it's quiet but there's also plenty of restaurants to try out. I'd come back, perhaps get one of the larger rooms.

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This was my room - it's only a double bed but it was comfortable enough.
The view from the window wasn't exactly inspiring
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This is the front of the Hotel - it's an attractive building - in the breakfast room it's still has it's original features with elaborate cornices and roses.

When it's time to go I bid Lin farewell, and once again she apologies for the noise. We chat for a little while and I must say, Lin would be one of the main reasons I'd return. She was friendly and helpful, handing out maps and giving out directions and offering suggestions of places to see.

Eventually I head out - I had planned to walk to the taxi rank but good fortune shines upon me, when a taxi pulls up at the lights right on the corner. Going to the station? - no problem for this driver.


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Hamburg Station certainly is large - I really like it's design - it's simple, elegant and practical.
While waiting on the platform this train caught my attention - the name made me chuckle.

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Boarding the train was no easy feat - for the first time there's no vacant seat in the non-smoking carriage yet the smoking section is basically empty. You'd think it would be the other way around. Luckily the other two people didn't smoke so it ended up being a fairly comfortable ride.

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One of the hardest parts of getting to this seat was making my way through the previous carriage. The aisle was blocked as a couple of little old ladies tried to fit their 10 pieces of luggage into their seating area. The people behind me were not as patient as I, shouting over my shoulder at them. They weren't the only ones with bags blocking the aisles - a ridiculous situation when you consider that the luggage compartment at the end of the carriage was empty! I've got some nice bruises from people's bags being jutted into me. Lovely.

During the trip I decide to have a look at the restaurant car. A combination of smoke haze and huge queue sends me scurrying back to my seat.

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An hour into the trip an attendant walks through handing out "welcome to 1st class" packs. Sounds impressive - it consists of a wet towelette and a mini packet of Haribo Goldbären (like gummy bears)
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I don't know why but this trip has been one of the most boring I've had - it's only 1 and a half hours to Berlin but it felt like I travelled for 5.

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