To get you in the mood for the next few posts, here is some Monty Python:
Honeybuns and I had been invited to see a friend in France and eventually managed to pull it off, subject to the constraints of our respective work schedules, the cat minder, our host, the things we wanted to see, the railway timetables and that we had to make our bookings rather late in the game.
So, at 08:21 we were on the X2000 towards Copenhagen. Electricity and Wifi onboard.
København H was as usual freezing cold and we had the usual two-hour stop-over due to the defensive SJ ticket policy. We had some Levantine junkfood at Shawarma House (not bad as such) and loafed around, waiting for our InterCity Express connection to Hamburg.
The train left on time at 15:45, but had no power outlets. It had a bistro that was able to procure good and plentiful (pre-packaged) salads, though. We also got a ride from Rødby to Puttgarden on M/F Deutschland. The chilly weather was not very conducive for staying out on deck, though.
We only had a 10-minute layover in Hamburg—a length of time I prefer, at least when the trains are on time. Our change was to an InterCity train of older style. It had power outlets at certain seats only, not ours. The seats themselves made their springs distinctly felt in our backsides, and the car felt distinctly dusty. Fortunately this would be a fairly short hop, 20:28–21:59. I noticed with some interest that on the track next over was a City Night Line train, stopping at Hannover, certainly that wouldn’t be the train we were supposed to get on, or if so, why couldn’t we get on it already here? We read our books and rode through the darkening evening. Even though the train was fairly long, there were only a few passengers along, but maybe the cars needed to be transported somewhere anyway.
In Hannover we again found the same CNL train on the track next to ours, and indeed it was the train we were to continue to France in. But! the car we were supposed to be in wasn’t there! However, on the next track over we could see sleeper cars that were marked as stopping in Metz. What now? Soon a shunting engine turned up, pulled away the cars and eventually returned to attach them to the waiting rest of the train and we could board our car and clamber into our berths as the train pulled away towards France at 22:16.