The train finally arrived at 23h50 as scheduled and we got on and made our way to Katowice the last city in Poland where we will be taking a connecting train to Czech Republic. We shared a carriage with some young couple who spoke a little bit of English and after establishing our destinations (small talk), we “reclined” our seats to sleep as much as one can sleep in these trains.
Arrived in the early hours of the morning, 06h10 and the plan was to immediately take the next train during the morning still, as we saw on our printed schedule there is one. Well, it looks like we missed it by few minutes. That meant we can only take one in the afternoon, and at least we got to explore the city which didn’t look promising at all at first.
But in the meantime, we needed to wait for places to open. Luckily there was a nice franchised coffee shop at the station which was open and the great smell of freshly brewed coffee was an absolute joy. We found ourselves a cosy place to sit and enjoyed the coffee – that was the best latte I’ve drank in a long time. Hubby decided to snooze for a while and me engaged in what I love best – people watching. People are fascinating and interesting creatures and whenever an opportunity arises I grab it.
This city turned out to be a real beauty, first of we thought it was just a small town but we quickly discovered that it’s massive. In fact, it is one of the biggest cities in the EU. Just loved the way the cosy shops are situated – on the lower ground with apartments on top floors, it’s got that intimate charm of a small town. Really beautiful small parks here and there, in the middle of the city. People taking a break and just sitting, watching activities of the day, reading a newspaper, having a sandwich or walking the dog.
We used the opportunity to buy souvenirs and collected everything we needed that will remind us of Poland. We found the post office to send postcards to friends and family. Indulged ourselves with lunch and headed back to the station just in time for our departure.
That should have been the end of the Polish story but NO, the train didn’t budge at 14h00 as scheduled. It is possible that there was an announcement or notification but as we don’t understand nor able to read the language, we will never know.
So, we double checked with the sales clerk about the next one which was at about an hour later and actually found out that we needed to reserve our seats on this one at an additional cost, which was now charged in euros…Huh! We crossed fingers that it actually was running and, yes it arrived exactly on time and looking better than before.
On board we experienced for the first time in our trip the really first class service. Ticket officers here spoke English, there was a restaurant on board and meals and/or drinks could be brought to your compartment at your request. After the formalities of checking tickets, we immediately moved to the restaurant to enjoy some chilled beers, which we could even pay in euros. Aah! we realised that the final destination of the train is Wien, Austria that is why it’s so efficient. It’s now dealing with clients across the border and thus probably stepping up to meet the standards of other countries.
We had an awesome journey as we descended south to enter Czech from Bohumin town.