Monday, September 3, 2012

Day 1.5

First, I'm going to keep a going blog here of my trip to europe (germany, switzerland, and austria) for September 2012. And im gonna link it from facebook so everyone can see.

Day one point five.

Yesturday flew over to europe with my good friend jim for a much needed vacation. Flew in two sections, SEA to SFO and SFO to FRA. The first leg of the trip was flown on an Airbus A319. Rahter uneventful and typical flight, althought it was my first time flying on an airbus. The second leg, was flown on an A380. One of the big airbuses. Flew in economy and although the seats were a bit narrow and the legroom left a bit to be desired the flight was actually reasonably comfortable. Lufthansa had a top notch av system in the seat back,  70+ CDs and TV shows to watch along with movies like Brave, Spiderman, and the avengers. they even had a episode of Star Trek TNG on there to watch, along with some documentaries. The food was OK, and the flight went well, aside from the crying baby and barking dog nearby.

After arriving in frankfurt and clearing customs, which unlike going inbetween the US and canada, they do a quick look at your passport mabye ask a question and let you move on. No fuss at all, really the way things should be. After the bags were collected we went to Frankfurt Flughafen Fernbf and got on train IC 2159 (Frankfurt - Dresden). This conventional train with IR stock and we boarded a 1st class compartment car. In Fulda some lady got on and sat in one of the two seats we dident take up. After riding all the way to Naumberg we got off along with most of the train to transfer ot the train to berlin. Naumberg was intresting as with many railway stations in the former DDR, it had one or two platforms that were still in use, and another large and abandoned platform that was being slowing overgrown and returned to the earth from which it came. One of the intresting things about railroading in the old DDR is just how much abandoned infrastructure (Platforms, Tracks, Overhead) there still is and how much it just sits and rots away.

In Naumberg ICE 1208 (Innsbruck - Stralsund Hbf) our connecting train was suppose to arrive at platform two, and the signs indicated as such, however the train crew told us (in german at first) that the train would arrive on platform one. So once we got the message we scrambled, bags in tow over to platformh one. Which ment going down the steps under the tracks and up the steps again. No elevators at Naumberg bf. Fourtunaltly for us ICE 1208 was running late, so we had plenty of time. And also unfourtunatly for us, we also lost more time as the train progrssed. getting into Berlin a half hour late.

Berlin Hbf is an intresting place. Its a new station in the city, only being opened to traffic a couple years ago. Because of the spilt of the city, berlin never had a central train station. On the west the ZOO stop served as the main train station, and i dont know what the east used. So, the Berlin Hbf is a modern impressive structures. It has a total of 16 tracks, 8 on a underground level, and the remainder on the top level. The rest of the floors are spacious and feature lots of shops and resturants (Pizza Hut, Burger King, and McDs) along with shops and other businessed. The center of the facility is relativly open  and everything is under glass canopies.

We transferred here to a S-Bahn train to take us a couple of stations over to alexanderplatz, where we boarded a U subway train to our hotel.

For dinner we returned to the Berlin Hbf and tried the food at the local pizza hut, since niehter of us had anything considerable to eat since we had breakfast on the flight that morning. After dinner we watched the trains and returned to our hotel.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

East Berlin used what is now Ost Bahnhof, but was for a while "Berlin Hbf" since East Berlin considered itself to be the real Berlin. The change was made in the last days of the Honecker regime. This is why you may hear some cynics refer to the present "Berlin Hbf" by its pre-rebuilding name, Lerhter Bahnhof

-Erik Griswold