Chicago

Jun. 21st, 2009 05:03 pm
juliet: (Default)
Total quantity of Chicago I have seen or am going to see: Union Station. Which is very much like a train station.

Amtrak trains v comfortable, plus I got a double seat all to myself all the way from Emeryville (SF). They're double-decker, and there's an observation car, and the food in the dining car is actually reasonably acceptable, for train food. I could still kinda do without another 22 hours or whatever of it... speaking of which, I should probably go and find the next train. And some dinner.
juliet: (Default)
Good morning from the centre of Australia, where it is a mere 20deg (35 max expected today).

My ride on the Ghan (the Darwin-Adelaide railway) started somewhat unexpectedly, viz, in a coach, due to a freight train derailment. We got put back on the train at Katherine, where there's a 4-hr stop anyway. Which gave time to take the local nature tour cruise thingy, where I saw WALLABIES and kites and lots of other sorts of birds and drank tea from a billy with gum-tree leaves in. It was all very, very beautiful.

Strangely enough, the reclining seats on the Ghan are a lot less comfortable than a proper sleeper (bah), although my lack of a seat-mate made life a bit easier. I migrated to the floor halfway through. You don't get provided with a pillow or blanket, which IMO is a bit cheap of them, and my pillow was in the checked luggage - will resolve this problem on the next stint.

After much Sorting Of Things Out, finally decided that I am hiring a car to get myself down to Uluru & then doing the Aborigine-led tours, rather than going with a backpacker minibus tour (lack of ethical/eco tourism certification was the main mover for this). Irritatingly, I have just discovered that the car rental I booked has changed its location at the last minute from downtown (where I am now) to the airport (where I am not), so I am off to hunt for the airport shuttle bus.
juliet: (Default)
Good morning from the centre of Australia, where it is a mere 20deg (35 max expected today).

My ride on the Ghan (the Darwin-Adelaide railway) started somewhat unexpectedly, viz, in a coach, due to a freight train derailment. We got put back on the train at Katherine, where there's a 4-hr stop anyway. Which gave time to take the local nature tour cruise thingy, where I saw WALLABIES and kites and lots of other sorts of birds and drank tea from a billy with gum-tree leaves in. It was all very, very beautiful.

Strangely enough, the reclining seats on the Ghan are a lot less comfortable than a proper sleeper (bah), although my lack of a seat-mate made life a bit easier. I migrated to the floor halfway through. You don't get provided with a pillow or blanket, which IMO is a bit cheap of them, and my pillow was in the checked luggage - will resolve this problem on the next stint.

After much Sorting Of Things Out, finally decided that I am hiring a car to get myself down to Uluru & then doing the Aborigine-led tours, rather than going with a backpacker minibus tour (lack of ethical/eco tourism certification was the main mover for this). Irritatingly, I have just discovered that the car rental I booked has changed its location at the last minute from downtown (where I am now) to the airport (where I am not), so I am off to hunt for the airport shuttle bus.

Siberia!

Oct. 1st, 2008 04:41 pm
juliet: (round the world)
Hello, I am in Siberia. Specifically, in Irkutsk, where I have learnt the lesson that even if late September is too early to be wearing scarf, gloves, and hat in London, it is not so in Siberia. Happily I picked up scarf & gloves in Moscow (& already had hat) and have been v grateful for them. The gloves are particularly awesome, being those fingerless-plus-fliptop-mitten type that enable one to operate camera, guidebook, lunch, etc without removing most of the nice warm glove.

Trans-Siberian Express! )

Language... )

Lake Baikal and Irkutsk )

This evening I'm off to Ulan Bator on another train. Hurrah. Although (see above) I am sad to leave Russia.

[0] Did you know how many calories there are in a cupasoup? About 120. That's not *food*. That's not even a decent snack. Bah.
[1] There are 250 rows, but as every row increases 2 stitches, this isn't even *close* to halfway.
[2] e.g. "magazeen" for shop. Or "medaly" for medal which I worked out in the museum today :)

Siberia!

Oct. 1st, 2008 04:41 pm
juliet: (round the world)
Hello, I am in Siberia. Specifically, in Irkutsk, where I have learnt the lesson that even if late September is too early to be wearing scarf, gloves, and hat in London, it is not so in Siberia. Happily I picked up scarf & gloves in Moscow (& already had hat) and have been v grateful for them. The gloves are particularly awesome, being those fingerless-plus-fliptop-mitten type that enable one to operate camera, guidebook, lunch, etc without removing most of the nice warm glove.

Trans-Siberian Express! )

Language... )

Lake Baikal and Irkutsk )

This evening I'm off to Ulan Bator on another train. Hurrah. Although (see above) I am sad to leave Russia.

[0] Did you know how many calories there are in a cupasoup? About 120. That's not *food*. That's not even a decent snack. Bah.
[1] There are 250 rows, but as every row increases 2 stitches, this isn't even *close* to halfway.
[2] e.g. "magazeen" for shop. Or "medaly" for medal which I worked out in the museum today :)

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