Day 13- A fast train and a slow bus to Perpignan

Posted: October 2, 2014 in Travel

One last hotel breakfast and then time to catch high speed train to Perpignan – same service we had caught from Paris but hopefully going in other direction! Able to spend a relaxing hour in the Renfe lounge before leaving. As occurs everywhere in Europe the advertised “free wi fi” is rarely available and definitely a pain even when. You would think in 2014 large cities could actually provide true free wi fi in the city especially a tourist haven like Barcelona.

The train boarding was easy – although at least they use X-Ray scanning of bags – and the train left on time as usual. Then the fun started. As soon as on train notified that we would have to get off at first stop , Girona, as a tunnel on track had flooded. Did someone leave a tap on? Not really any heavy rain I am aware off. So the train had to disembark with bags and hop on a bus – yes the whole train! And we were only going another 40 minutes ! So after another hour and a half on a bus and waiting on platforms etc we were boarded on a carbon copy of first train, same carriage same seat. All in all not bad but for English speaking you were a bit screwed and just had to follow the masses and hope for the best. At least we were now entertained by the whinging Pom behind us moaning long and loud – yes she was going to Paris. Must admit it does seem like poor track design for a “fast ” train if a bit of rain brings the whole thing down. On the bright side we saw a bit of Girona and got a reminder of why we don’t travel on buses if can possibly avoid it! One last amusing incident about 10 mins short of Perpignan. We stopped in middle of about 4 parallel tracks. Then suddenly on our left, another train whizzed by. Now if it goes quicker than the high speed train, I want that one next time. Once again, and luckily for us, it appears that everyone had to disembark again at Perpignan! Mrs Pommy would not be impressed. They say this time a bridge was out. The dissemination of info to passengers was simply woeful

In an apparent change of fortune when arriving at hotel at 1230 pm it was ready to move into room! Nice room too, more spacious. Still no bloody clock or kettle though! We headed out for lunch and wanted something light- if you call 3000 French fries light that is! Perpignan looks a bit dull. The Hop on Hop Off tourist bus only has one stop. Luckily it was a chocolate shop! We saw one souvenir shop – selling Spanish souvenirs! It was odd indeed, we were in France and yet there were Catalan flags everywhere, not French. The locals looked a bit rough too. We were able to organise our car for a early start tomorrow – a Black Ford Grande C Max. Looks ok, except they stuck the steering wheel on the wrong side. Typical French. It will be an experience.

After the pleasant stroll around town it was back to the rather nice hotel bar for a couple of coldies and an early night. It had been a warm but booteeful day weather wise. Our first travel glitch had been relatively minor in the end.

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s