Train Jotting - Berlin to Prague
Deutsche Bahn Makes the Trip from Berlin to Prague a Pleasure
I was able to add a few days in Prague to the end of my trip to Berlin. This gave me the pleasurable excuse to visit Berlin's wonderful newish (2006) main train station - Berlin Hauptbahnof. It is a marvel of architecture and planning set over five levels so that lines, including the city's communter-oriented S-Bahn and U-Bahn, enter and exit as efficiently as possible. Berlin's Schonefeld airport will have a direct link next year, giving Berlin an unbeatably connected infrastructure.
The station is managed by Deutsche Bahn
,the German national rail operator, with reassuring efficiency. Deutsche Bahn is now the largest railway operator and rail infrastructure owner in Europe. I took one of their trains to Prague on the Berlin to Vienna line.
A nice journey in a snoozably quiet carriage. Maybe too snoozable, as I woke with the imprint of the adjacent chair on my face as a member of staff toured the carriage taking requests for dining.
Tea was required.
The tea was brought to me as we entered Bohemia through the Ore mountains. A nice civil touch to see that Deutsche Bahn haven't abandoned tea pots.
The fact that I had drifted off into dreamland and the reviving properties of the tea made me wonder what happened to the very British Teasmade. It's still going, I'm happy to report. Maybe they need to think about a Teasmade with a dock for digital music players. I think I'll get young Mrs Tweed to contact them and do some investigation.
I noticed that the German language gave way to Czech from Dresden onwards. No passport check at Děčín, the first Czech stop. I always think that's a bit of a shame. I really want someone to ask if they can see my papers, like an Eric Ambler spy story.
Do seek out the cafe at Prague station on the upper level. It really is rather charming, particularly at night. In fact, try and arrange a late night rendezvous wearing a trench coat and a trilby hat. Code name Tweed Pig.
I did the usual things for a short stay in Prague. I saw this sign and thought of you. A sign for a punk clothing and records shop. I always find it interesting to see how Britishness is appropriated abroad to convey a message. Depending on what's being sold, images of 70s London punks and gentlemanly pin-striped clubland images are perennial favourites.
The Berlin to Prague Playlist - Forss Journeyman
I took a playlist of music for my trip between Berlin and Prague. Obviously, any German-based playlist would include Dietrich, Fischer Dieskau, the Comedian Harmonists, Kraftwerk and a bit of schlager.
I also popped this one on. Journeyman by Forss. We don't feature much electronic music in The Tweed Pig, but this is an interesting re-working of Kraftwerk's classic Trans Europe Express. The spoken word is from poet and DJ Rich Medina. "On a southbound train that seems to eat through the German countryside like a mylar saw through wood..."