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How not to get a train

Xi'an, China

Here is an interesting tale - the moral is never to do anything with a hangover. Essentially what you need to know is that I bought a ticket first thing one morning (even before my hostel fry up) and that I was told about two different trains, details of which were scribbled on a piece of paper. Realising that the first train was full, the ticket seller turned over the paper and wrote details of the second train on the other side - I bought a ticket and was happy.

Now, I assumed that the earlier train had no space and therefore I was put onto the one after. Logical no? No. I got to the train station at 19.40, well in advance of my 21.04 train, but strangely it seemed to be boarding. More strange was that I seemed to be one of only two people actually getting the train... and the other person was running. So I ran too. I sprprinted in fact. Next thing I hear a bell ringing and realise that I have to get on the train despite being about 4 carriages short of my bed. A few miserable minutes of sweating my way through narrow, crowded corridors and pissing off entire carriages at a time, I found my bed and collapsed onto it spectacularly in front of five evidently amused chinese men. I took the piece of paper out and looked at the other side. 19.45. Oh well, at least there was no waiting around...

I spent the next 14 hours trying to Pacsafe my bag and get a decent nights sleep without offending the guys around me. I think I managed it because the next morning I was well slept and chatting to a couple of guys from Xian (Xianese?) about how bad we were at speaking each others language:

Me: My Chinese very bad.

Xianese man: My English very bad.

We laugh.

permalink written by  steve_stamp on April 11, 2009 from Xi'an, China
from the travel blog: The art of being lost
tagged Train, Xianese and Ticket

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