Don’t mess with an express train …

I literally run into all the shit you probably can run into on a Friday when taking the train home.

I had to travel from Saarbrücken to Köthen (Anhalt) via Mannheim and Braunschweig. It’s an unwritten law, that the trains are mostly overcrowded on Fridays (because everyone wants to get home). I was lucky and my company already made seat reservations.

Crowded (Photo by Manfred Yeung)

Instead of changing the train in Mannheim, I catched up with the train in Frankfurt (Main). What I didn’t realized, was the point that it had cost my seat reservation. The train was totally overcrowded – as expected – and another man was sitting on my seat. All of a sudden, he booked via internet and had the same seat reserved as I. The conductor said to me, that you only reserve a seat from the starting station and if you don’t take it, the reservation is void after 20 minutes.

Well, found a seat after a lot of people got out of the train the next station (Hanau) I enjoyed my ride till Braunschweig. The train had a delay of two minutes. The connecting train scheduled on the same platform 5 minutes later. It just happened to me, that I thought, that I had my tickets left in the compartment. I instantly jumped back in, checked the compartment, ran out and – bang – the door just closed. I tried to open it, ran to the conductor, but the only thing he did, was to tell the driver a ‘Go!’. “We can’t wait 30mins on every station, man!”, he sarcastically said. I would have loved to punish him at least 30 minutes from this station on, because this ment, that I had to pick the local trains connecting Wolfsburg with Magdeburg and Magdeburg with Köthen.

I had to wait one hour in Wolfsburg. Nice city – same as Köthen: nothing there than a small station hall. But it came even better. I hopped in the train to Magdeburg and two right wing extremists with me. Of course they didn’t had a ticket. I was surprised: the conductor didn’t raised a train fee of 40 EURs, he just mentioned that they need to buy a ticket at the automat. Try to do that during the week and you’ll have a hell of a trouble. After they started to play rassistic music, I moved to the other end of the train. No one seemed to care anyways – the conductor was never seen again till Magdeburg main station.

I took it like a man, when the train conductor just mentioned that there is a rail replacement bus service on part of the track and arrived home after 9 hours instead of 6.

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