Bye bye Russia
Naushki Travel Blog› entry 10 of 37 › view all entries
September 29th, 2007 – by: coolguy
Eight hours passed, and eventually the train that had brought me there moved on, leaving me again waiting on the platform. My outgoing train pulled in soon afterwards and I eagerly approached it, hoping to get on and stash my bags in my cabin. No such luck. The Chinese man responsible for my wagon (it was a Chinese train) shooed me away and indicated I had to wait. So wait I did. I've become good at waiting around at train stations by this point. The other travellers on the train disembarked and I made friends with some British guys. They agreed to guard my stuff and I eagerly rushed to the store and stocked up on tasty provisions (besides curing my hunger, it was also a good way to blow through all my Russian rubles before the border).
We waited around several more hours on the train platform, and I tried entering (alighting?) the train once again.
With the passport out of my control, the Chinese attendant finally let me board the train. He put me in the same cabin with the British guys even though my ticket was for another. They had brought some smutty magazines with them and they befriended the Chinese attendant by letting himread it. It was hilarious watching him flip through Nuts magazine, pointing at scantily clad women and saying one of the few English words he knew: beautiful. Eventually they returned our passports and the military came in to search the train. They didn't bother with our bags, instead searching the luggage areas and inside the heaters. I guess they didn't find anything because the train soon began to move. We tried to sleep but were woken up soon afterwards as the Mongolian immigration agents tried to outdo their Russian counterparts. All in all, it took half the day to cross the border.
As I leave Russia, here are some thoughts:
-Moscow has to be one of the most expensive cities in the world.
-Mullets are the most popular haircut in Russia (short or long, men or women).
-Russian restrooms have a bad reputation, but in fact they don't even exist.
-If a strange man approaches you at a cafe and wont leave you alone, he wants you to buy him a drink.
-Hockey doesn't seem to be nearly as popular out here as I would have thought.
-People like wearing clothes that have English on them, even if the English makes no sense.
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