All aboard the Death Train!

Quijarro Travel Blog

 › entry 13 of 45 › view all entries
With new found friends waiting to board the Death Train
Ok so its actually called The Orient Express but its nickname sounds better doesn't it?
After getting up at scary o'clock to complete all the border formalities, which after the Brazilian Federal Police decided to turn up was actually quite a smooth affair (pushing in with some Aussies at the front of the que always helps, oops!) I stood there marvelling at the difference between the two sides, affluent Brazilian verses its not so affluent neighbour, the contrast I have to say was quite stark. I have to admit the Bolivian side was helped by the lovely Peruvian couple I met who helped me with the 50million miles per hour Spanish that the border staff were speaking. So the old LP tells you you need to be there asap in the morning to get a ticket, also it tells you there are no trains on a Sunday, clearly in this case a total falecy, so then what is there to do in Quijarro till the 4.30pm train leaves? Answer absolutley naff all except change your curreny over if you have any Reias left or have Dollars or Euros, surf the net, eat, try not to get sunburnt, oh and there's nowhere to leave your rucksacks either as the train station staff appeared to be MIA or just worked when the felt like it, I sensed this was going to be a common Bolivian theme.
Finally 4.30pm rolled around and we boarded the train, thank god we bought tickets for the best class, 'Super Pullman' as 2nd class could have been verging on 3rd world, not that I have an issue with basic forms of transport but I really wanted to be able to sleep on the 15hour train ride to Santa Cruz. Also the LP suggests you'll get to see some great scenery, wrong, well we saw a beautiful sunset but that was it. Maybe its better on the earlier train coming from Bolivia, who knows, after that all we got was a bone shaking 1-2 hours at the start where I even struggled to write my journal as my handwriting was so bad and also I was worried about getting motion sickness.
Anyway, thankfully I did sleep (after trying to watch the movie Australia in badly dubbed Spanish with Spanish subtitles - eh?) although my snoring companion next to me did her best to keep me awake, although that's a bit hypocritical of me to say that when I've been know to do it after a few too many and when I have a cold.
Death train done and dusted, first day in Bolivia spent hanging around for transport, grrrrr!!!!
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With new found friends waiting to …
With new found friends waiting to…
photo by: debsadams1979