6am - and I'm leaving my home to travel to #PyConUK. My first time traveling with an InterRail pass!
I recently realised that starting in Stuttgart (the next big city) I can be in Paris in three hours, and in London in six. I'm not from around here, so this was a surprise!
It's just me, my backpack, and my duffle bag. I'll work on the trains, but I'm used to doing that on domestic trains. Since I think I'll be pretty tired when arriving after over eleven hours, I'm travelling a day early.
So the first leg is the TGV to Paris. My seat is upstairs next to a window, so this will make for a pleasant work environment. Beautiful sunrise outside.
The InterRail travel plan app is pleasant to use, btw. Built to search for connections, then save them offline, with a consistent, helpful interface. Their online interface is somewhat worse, sadly, and buggy in weird ways - but since I only need the app today, I won't complain.
Left Strasbourg at a very leisurely pace exactly an hour late, so this should still work out. On Twitter, the Eurostar team notified me that there is an agreement that if the TGV is late, one can take the next available Eurostar without having to purchase a second reservation. Sounds perfect (and also: brilliant service!)
Arrived in Paris in time, enjoyed the walk from Gare de l'Est to Gare du Nord. Two large stations so close together seem unusual, will have to make time to read up on their histories.
At Gare du Nord, I had to go through the most ridiculous security theatre to board the train. Two consecutive passport scans plus face recognition both times (once for the British, once for the French). Baggage scan, metal detectors, remove your belt, the whole nine yards.
Got to London right on time. Walked halfway to Paddington, then took the Bakerloo line the rest of the way. Nearly there!
Also, now I've been (at least for a short time, but with walking around, so it counts) in Paris and London.
See, this is why I like to travel - hi get to see so many different ways of doing things, and improving on every day stuff.
For instance, this train has very visible red/green lights next to the seat reservation displays, so you can see at a glance where to find a free seat. 🤩
@rixx it's probably the same as with King's Cross and St. Pancras stations. Back then when the first railway lines were built between cities, they were operated by different companies, and each company built their own terminus because they didn't want to share a station with their competitor.
@rixx if I remember correctly, Leipzig central station was also originally two different stations operated by different companies located right next to each other, and they decided to built a joint terminus together, with each company operating one wing of the new station building.
@rixx At least you don't had to go to Gare Lyon
@rixx das erinnert mich daran, das ich es zwar schon nach London geschafft habe, allerdings noch nie in Paris war.
@rixx Oh, Cardiff ... 😍 Enjoy!
say hi to the Doctor if you meet him.
@benno Or her! Yeah, will do. If some toots in my past start making sense, you'll know what's up!
@rixx Oh, seems like we'll share the island soon. I'll arrive in Newcastle on Saturday.
@dkl Haha, alright! I'll be leaving next Wednesday, also by train.
@rixx good God, I'll have to take Eurostar soon as well. Already dreading it
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