We finished packing, had a light breakfast and headed out to the train station for our trip to Nuremberg. The cold, the snow, and the gravel all plotted against us….or at least against our suitcases. The wheels on our rolling bags froze so we pretty much had to drag them to the train station.
The station wasn’t far and we got there earlier than anticipated…..the train wasn’t due to leave until 11:04….over an hour away. We verified which train we were supposed to take two, three, then four times….just to be sure. We boarded early, tucked our luggage away and settled in for the one hour ride to Nuremberg.
We’ve only been in Germany for three days, but we’ve seen no evidence to support the German reputation for punctuality and reliability. 11:04 came and went…..then 11:10…..then 11:20…..no crackly loudspeakers, no announcements. Finally, we started moving out of the station. We got about ½ mile down the track when the train stopped. After a brief pause, we proceeded….. backwards…..back into the station…..where we stayed while the train was being worked on. Thirty minutes later, we started out of the station again…..this time stopping about one mile down the track…..to let another train pass us….probably the express train to Nuremberg.
Finally, finally…..we started up again. The journey took us through beautiful snow-filled fields, along groves of fir trees with snow-laden branches, past hop yards, their posts now supporting icicles, and by charming little towns with tall onion-domed spires…..so picturesque, we could have been traveling through a Thomas Kincaid painting.
Just as we were settling in for the ride, there was an announcement on the loudspeaker and everyone started picking up their belongings and putting on their coats. A kind stranger who spoke English advised us that we had to get off the train and wait for another one to take us into Nuremberg. This meant getting all of our luggage off the train, moving it down a stairwell, through a pedestrian tunnel and then back up another stairwell to a different platform…..hopefully before the next train arrived.
Although this was very do-able in the past, the icy steps and my gimpy, stair-challenged leg made it a herculean task. Craig handled the luggage in multiple trips as I slowly made my way down the stairs….then up the stairs. It wasn’t pretty, but we made it…..much to Craig’s surprise and delight.
Onward to Nuremberg.