The slow train to Krakow
Krakow Travel Blog› entry 11 of 27 › view all entries
I left the Wombats hostel at 7am to catch the 8.30am train to main hofbahnhof station. Compared to the clean efficient German trains, the train that would take me from Berlin to Krakow was old, and pretty empty. I guess only a few of us were foolish enough to sit on a train for 10 hours.
Oh my god, this was the longest, slowest train journey ever. I got bored of listening to music on my iPod, so I tried listening to Polish local radio to keep me entertained. The train arrived into Krakow only 30 mins late, which considering how slow it when, I thought that was good going.
Getting out of the Station at Krakow was a very different world from Berlin. It was dark, and the station felt a little edgy. You come though the under pass that connects all the platforms, into a bright brand new swanky shopping mall, bustling with late night trade, marble floors and top designer names. It was like chalk and cheese together, separated by one doorway, really bizarre.
I found my way out of the shopping mall and found Greg and Tom's hostel across the road. i was to find this a lot on my journey, but Greg and Toms was a hostel based out on one apartment in a block of apartments. with only room for about 14 people in 2 rooms, this was a really sweet little place. I arrived into the hallway looking tired and hungry. This would be the thing that set them apart, they said "you must be Mike?", they placed a shot glass of cherry flavoured vodka in my hand, and told me dinner was served. WOW!! This is how every hostel should be!
In brief, they recognised that I had had a long journey, that I was tired, that it was 8pm, and that I wanted to sit and eat. They knew that checking me in could be done later. This really impressed me on a customer service level.
tonight was 'Mad Dog' hot dog night, so lots of hot dogs in baguettes. Salad and cake, and loads more cherry vodka!! seriously,t hey gave everyone about 4 shoots just with their meal. it was great to sit down and chat with the other guests. Everyone seemed amazing, and were sharing tips on the best stuff to do.
After dinner, i checked in, but again, they did it all for me, they asked for my passport and got me to sign, rather than getting me to fill out those tedious booking in slips you get at most big hostels.
They had a nice apartment living room, with a big flat TV, a Wii console and some board games, DVDs and a couple of computers for internet access. Everyone was chilling out and was chatty and friendly. Oh yeah, MORE cherry vodka was handed out :)