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Published: April 4th 2018
. Our taxi to the airport today was a mix of Uber and the guy next door with a car we can rent. It was a little old corolla type of car with half the boot taken up by an LPG bottle. I’m pleased to report that he has the same sense of pride in his car and makes sure it is washed at least once a year. The case had to sit in the front with the driver and 3 of us squeezed into the back. I didn’t even bother with the seatbelt. The upside was that he knew the way, took a few risks to get us into the traffic, and he only cost about $5. He had a very good tip because where were going zloty are of no use.
, We are currently travelling on a train, running 50 minutes late to meet a connection in Rybnik that allowed a 30 minute change over; you do the maths. We are lucky Tim is with us, because he is stressed out enough for the 3 of us. I don’t care much. I’ve learnt to try and not worry about what might happen, but rather enjoy this train
9.42. Platform 3, Wroclaw Station
There should be our train in this picture.
ride on a day that started with rain and has now let sunlight through. It is warmer than we’ve experienced for weeks and the small booth on this train generates a little extra heat.
We could be extras in a Murder On The Orient Express movie in this cabin. The young girl sleeping and periodically waking to eat cake from a container was our only companion for 3 hours, so there was room to stretch out a bit . The train left Wroclaw, winding slowly through rail yards, industrial estates until it finally broke through a wedge of appartment blocks and smaller homes before crawling through farmland.
I can only assume the train speed is something to do with the condition or age of the tracks or the train, or a combination of both. We were doing about 60kph at one stage and the overall time is scheduled as 3 hours to travel 150 kilometres. This train is part of the world’ slow’ movement and, like slow food, it’s an interesting way to pass through flat countryside.
On a fast train we would have missed the fields of wild deer grazing on farmland and would have whizzed
through the small villages freckled with grey and cream cottages, or the poorer blocks with tiny makeshift dwellings surrounded by gardens of vegetables, chickens and small farm animals, all living in harmony to provide a partially subsistence way of life. Thats just my take on it.
The train gathered pace for the last 40 minutes of our ride and started to behave as trains should. A normally slow train managed to gain enough time for us to jump from this one, run between platforms, and make our connection with 1 minute to spare.
The final trip to Bratislava was on a more modern fast train; our cabin was full for most of the journey with an older business woman who did work onboard replacing our quiet beer drinking social media guy, and other people trying to get a seat where there were none. The inspectors visited us 3 times on this leg of the trip , checking for castaways.
You saw less farms from this train with dense forests breaking up the countryside . Rusting long abandoned railway tracks veered from the main line and were immediately swallowed up by trees and saplings, reclaiming this ground as
Outskirts Of Wroclaw
Small detached houses
their own. In the distance, hikers marched with purpose along trails of leaves and pine needles through these dark haunting forests of twisted deciduous trees covered in moss, and smaller clusters of white elders hunched together, as if to keep warm.
Tim had a late brainwave that the dining car was worth a visit, and what a short visit it was. With only 30 minutes to go we entered this almost empty oasis of space and comfort. We ordered tea, and sat wondering why we had spent the last 3.5 hours in a crowded compartment when this was next door, well, next carriage.
A quick tram ride took us within 5 minutes of our Airbnb accommodation and after a little guidance and advice from our charming hostess, we went exploring.
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