Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Long Train Journey To The West

I thought the Indian trains are bad enough but the one that brought us across China almost diagonally is equally bad in terms of seat reservations. You can get on board the train as long as you are holding a ticket barring whether you have a seat for the 30 hours and some almost to 56 hours on board this train. As can be seen from the pictures, there is hardly any standing room, even spilling to the toilet area. And if you do not have a confirmed seat or sleeping berth, you are expected to stand the length of the journey.

As versus the trains in India, the food here is fabulous. You can either order a set meal which comprises of a meat dish, vegetables, soup and a big bowl of rice for RMB35 or you can order dishes. A fish, one vegetable and a meat dish with 3 bowls of rice cost around RMB90 which comes up to be cheaper than the set meal. And with free flow of hot chinese tea for both the meals. More importantly, it is clean. They actually have an open kitchen where you can see the chef at work.

Outside the toilet
The walkway is packed and so is the luggage compartment

Tenzin Dorje Rinpoche keeping himself entertained

Sleep if you can

Meals on wheels

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