Traveling Europe – From Copenhagen, Denmark
I am on vacation and my husband and I are touring Europe. We flew in to Lisbon, Portugal and stayed a couple of days there. Then we took the Eurorail through Paris and into Frankfurt where we spent the night and on to Copenhagen yesterday. I will post some photos, videos etc later.
Let’s start with the train from Portugal. Normally the Eurorail trains, particularly the French and German trains are delightful to ride. However, the Portugese train was an ‘experience’. Now that I have that experience under my belt, I don’t need to do it again. First it was a warm day though by Portuguese standards it had begun to cool off. We had reserved a cabin and the nice Italian porter was very good to us. However, the room got hotter and hotter although there was a slight hint (very slight) that there may be air conditioning to come. After a few hours of sweating we asked our neighbor if their cabin was hot and they said yes. So, we decided it was a standard rather than a malfunction.
As the hours went on and the sweat was rolling off our bodies, we decided it was better to open the window although it was hot outside. At least, we got some ventilation. Then we ate dinner and it was time for bed. Well, the clack, clack of the train was loud as the window was open and there was still no hint of any air conditioning. However, it had now cooled off outside enough to sleep. So, we left the window open and dealt with the clack, clack.
In the middle of the night I’m certain we passed a sewage plant as there was the telltale odor. Later in the night the train came to a stop and I heard ‘stuff’ going all over the cabin. So, trying not to awaken my husband from his hard earned sleep, I got my tiny little flashlight which I always carry when I travel and looked on the floor. Thankfully, I did as there was my glasses among the makeup items and some snacks. So, I got it all up and went back to bed hoping for a little sleep.
Early the next morning (6:00 AM) although my body was still on home time, we were awakened by our porter and told it’s time to get up. Our train would arrive at the station in one hour and we had to change and pack. What about the shower? Forget it, no shower was available. So, I rummaged through my luggage to retrieve the moist wipes that I had so smartly brought along and ‘showered’ using them. My husband who usually sees those as ‘sissy stuff’ was grateful for his share of moist wipes which I provided.
So, we changed trains and got on the much upgraded train into Paris where about 5 hours later we arrived at Gare Montparnasse. We went from Montparnasse via the metro to Gare de l’Est metro station where we proceeded to the Est Train station and boarded an ICE train which was a dream come true for us. It was no small feat getting from Montparnasse to Est via the metro during rush hour with our luggage though. We still after years of travel have not learned how to travel light. So, we tugged and pulled. But, when we got on that train it was worth it all. We were on our way to Frankfurt and on to Copenhagen.
In Frankfurt we spent the night and boarded another train into Copenhagen the next day. This too was a wonderful train with the four person sections and we were so lucky. We had two wonderful section mates one was a native Dane and the other was a 72 year old engineer who was living in Denmark but was born in Iran and fled to Denmark. He had also lived in the states for a while and was very eager to talk about his wonderful experiences in the states. So, for six hours we all talked non-stop.
One interesting event on that train trip was when our train stopped and the conductor announced that the train had to take a ferry across a channel and we weren’t allowed to stay on the train. We had to disembark the train and board a ferry which really was a treat. It had more wonderful food choices than I could imagine. So, we stayed on the ferry for about 30 minutes and ate and then got back on the train again. Our section mates were very familiar with that event, but we found it rather delightful especially the store and cafe on the ferry. I just found the idea of the train taking a ferry completely fascinating. My husband said there were rather large tanker trucks taking it too.
Now we are in Copenhagen and heading to Tivoli Square. My feet are swollen from all the travel, but they’ll just have to get over it. 😉 I’ll post more updates soon.