A Travellerspoint blog

2. Trains!

and a waffle!

sunny 24 °C
View Emerald Anniversary trip 2023 on nanny0gg's travel map.

A brief foray into the environs of the hotel this morning to pick up sustenance for lunch then back to Bruxelles station…for a late breakfast of gaufres and coffee before getting the first train of the day. This one was the good one and took us to Köln on time. I’m sure I remembered years ago that there were great pretzels to be had at Köln station…and I was right, so I added one to the sustenance for later use.
It all started to deteriorate from there! The train we needed next was destination Basel but we needed to get to Mannheim. First the information board said it was 15 minutes late…then 35…and then cancelled.😱! The very few Deutsche Bahn staff who dared appear on the platform were being shouted at by irate would be travellers (not us!) and they had no idea what was happening either - then suddenly, the Basel train arrived to everyone’s surprise so we were off at last. We knew we’d missed the connection at Mannheim for Heidelberg but it is a short journey with plenty of trains (in theory!). We spent the next hour moving from one platform to the next looking at trains that might be very late or cancelled (or both), chatting to locals in the ever increasing mob of frustrated commuters to get information on how to get to Heidelberg and out of the heat. We didn’t get on one that looked like a scene from the Tokyo rush hour and after that I lost my new friend who having waited so long decided to catch the bus to get her home instead of hanging on for a train. Eventually a suitable train did appear (quickly followed by another on a totally different platform which as a result, left virtually empty!)and we finally arrived in Heidelberg over 2 hours later than intended. Suddenly, I feel slightly friendlier towards Avanti West Coast…they at least told us when they’d cancelled trains early enough to do something about it and suggested alternatives. Unfortunately the customer service from DB was virtually non-existent.

Having finally reached our hotel (another Ibis) near Heidelberg station we were too hot and bothered to go out early enough to find a restaurant so instead, found a friendly local supermarket where we bought a tasty picnic for our evening repast…including some local beer. Now, if only I’d got a bottle opener🙁. Oh well, it’ll save until tomorrow!

Posted by nanny0gg 07:43 Archived in Germany

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