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After a quick night's sleep in Moscow, it was time to head to Kazansky Rail Station to continue my journey to the Olympics. The original plan was to take the new double-decker train to Sochi, but after arriving at the station I was informed the train was full. So, I waited for the standard train which wasn't scheduled to depart for about three hours. What to do in the meantime? I wanted to take photos of the station, but a guard immediately approached when he saw the camera and informed me no photography is allowed. I was able to speak to the Chief of the station, a very nice guy who spoke decent English. Because the station is undergoing a lot of construction, the Chief preferred that no photos be taken. However, he offered to give me rare access to the rooftop of Kazansky Rail Station and from there I saw some amazing views shortly before sunrise!Read more...Collapse )


( 202 comments — Leave a comment )
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Feb. 28th, 2014 11:52 pm (UTC)
>>32. Typical, depressive Russian town. Old, colorless and grey.

Perhaps this impression because the trains run along the edges and the outskirts of town. :)
In fact, Ryazan - the old town. I think it will be interesting to a foreigner who is interested in Russian culture.

Walk through the Ryazan: http://boris-mavlyutov.livejournal.com/15965.html
The town also has its Kremlin: http://s.pikabu.ru/images/big_size_comm/2011-11_6/13223346858958.jpg

And I thank you for the photo report from Sochi!
Mar. 1st, 2014 12:23 am (UTC)
I'm happy to report my impressions about Sochi! Thanks for the links, Ryazan looks more colorful in these photos. :)
(no subject) - qi_tronic - Mar. 1st, 2014 11:02 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 1st, 2014 02:27 am (UTC)
My longest train ride was about 65 hours (from Krasnoyarsk in Siberia to Moskow) in 2007. Today, very few people are using trains for such distances, because in the last years even 3d class in usually more expensive than planes. Only for a shorter distances (less than 1500km) or when there is no direct flight, long-distance trains in Russia are still preferable.
Mar. 1st, 2014 02:46 am (UTC)
With the expansion of air travel and routes, the train is a lesser used option in many countries. But I still like this mode of transport on occasion if you have the time. It's more interesting than sitting in an airplane seat! :) Btw, I see the photo in your avatar. You're a fan of the classic American show M.A.S.H.?
(no subject) - pshvalov - Mar. 1st, 2014 05:44 am (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 1st, 2014 07:40 am (UTC)
American Impressions from Sochi Olympics
User ok_no_dim referenced to your post from American Impressions from Sochi Olympics saying: [...] rt infrastructure now in place in Sochi. I arrived in the Adler Station after a long train ride [...]
Mar. 2nd, 2014 03:46 pm (UTC)
The sad thing is, with all of the great pictures you showed, all of the pictures making fun of Sochi got more attention than anything else.

These pictures show some good things on your trip.
Mar. 2nd, 2014 09:35 pm (UTC)
I think perceptions of Russia changed once the sporting events began, but with the recent events in Crimea its reputation is once again damaged. Regardless, the Olympics are an awesome experience and I'm happy I got to be a part of it.
Mar. 2nd, 2014 08:22 pm (UTC)
Hi! It is unfortunate that you Ryazan seemed drab and depressing. In fact it is an old and very beautiful Russian city. Close Konstantinovo village, the birthplace of the poet Sergei Yesenin. Tepe Ryazan worth a visit :)

Mar. 2nd, 2014 08:23 pm (UTC)
Hi! It is unfortunate that you Ryazan seemed drab and depressing. In fact it is an old and very beautiful Russian city. Close Konstantinovo village, the birthplace of the poet Sergei Yesenin. You should visit the Ryazan :)

Mar. 2nd, 2014 09:37 pm (UTC)
Thanks for photos. You're right, a train station probably isn't the best way to judge the city. :) Maybe I'll return to this area someday and explore further.
(no subject) - 76329 - Mar. 2nd, 2014 11:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 3rd, 2014 04:12 pm (UTC)
In Soviet Union there were 3 classes which are historically called SV (1-st class): 2 bunks + washstand at some modifications, Coupe (2-nd class): 4 bunks + door and Platzkart (3-rd class): 4 bunks (can be extended to 6, if needed) without door. There are also not popular 4-th class equipped with armchairs only and business class with individual bathroom and some additional conveniences. In Russia I suggest never to use 3-rd class - there is a big risk to encounter stinky annoying friends with a bottle of cheap vodka and got extreme choke once you've opened the door of the bathroom.
Mar. 3rd, 2014 04:23 pm (UTC)
I think the chance of getting stinky, drunk companions probably depends on the route on which you're traveling. :) I can't imagine long distance trail or bus travel in only a seat (w/no bed!). I've seen some of the luxury private cabins on some trains, but I doubt I'll ever have the opportunity or money to travel in such grand style.
Mar. 4th, 2014 02:43 pm (UTC)
It's a pity you didn't get a place in a new double-decker train (it's still inconceivable for me how could they not provide a place for you in the new double-decker train if you had tickets just to this train?) I have dreamed to looked at a Russian double-decker train! But the offer to access to the rooftop of Kazansky Rail Station I think was a very generous from the Chief!
> There are two restrooms at the end of each hall
Hope they did not close them before every big station? Because in Russia there are still a lot of trains with toilets which have no reservoirs to keep their contents, instead of it this content pours directly to the railroad! That is why they have to close the toilets before stations and open them only after a train leaves these stations.
Do you remember heroines of 'Sex and The City' TV-series, how they complained about tiny bathrooms in their compartments? What would they say about two common restrooms without any shower for the whole car? :)))
> What's the longest train ride you've ever taken?
As far as I remember it was a journey from Saint-Peterburg to Kaliningrad (former German Koenigsberg) in 2007. It took just about 24-26 hours as your trip.
That time I was able to sleep in trains so it was a rather good journey. But to spend more than a day without a shower in summer time and to pass 4 customs - all this was rather tiresome.
And, you know, I used to travel by trains a lot during my childhood and youth. When I was a child we used to visit my grandparents who lived in the south of Russia. It usually took us a day and a half to get there. We went by night train to Moscow, and we had to wait till the evening for our next train. (We usually spent this day walking, visiting museums and shops) And after one more night trip we finally arrived to my grandparents' place.
And when I was a student I used to visit my parent often, and I went there by train too.
> and did you meet any interesting people on the ride?
Well, yes. Can you imagine, when I was a student I had sexual adventures with my fellow-travelers three times! But all three times it was only a one-night stand.
> Definitely not as smooth as the Sapsan ride.
Forgot to write you in a comment to your previous post about Sapsan train that I didn't feel any difference in smoothness between Allegro train, German trains and usual Russian trains...
And now after you saw our third class cabins I can explain you the lowest class that is called 'common' in Russia. It is the third class car where people seat! In threes on the lower berth of the third class cabin. Of course they can use second and third berths to sleep but no mattresses or furnishing is provided by attendants...
Mar. 4th, 2014 09:43 pm (UTC)
The Chief of this station was very friendly, although the photos of Putin and Lenin above his desk were scary. :)) Hopefully next time I can ride the double decker trains and do a report on them. I didn't notice the restrooms closed during the station stops, so we were probably in a very new train. So, you had exciting adventures on the train! Good for you! :)
Mar. 7th, 2014 01:17 am (UTC)
If there are options full makeup + high heels at 8am, vs. pajama pants + hoody all day long, I vote for full makeup! )))
Mar. 7th, 2014 01:31 am (UTC)
What's wrong with hoodies? I wear them all the time. :)) Pajamas in public? This definitely tops the list of worst American behavior. I really hate it.
(no subject) - olgor - Mar. 7th, 2014 02:40 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Mar. 7th, 2014 03:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 12th, 2014 04:26 pm (UTC)
Parts Unknown: Russia
User hi_again referenced to your post from Parts Unknown: Russia saying: [...] the overnight train ride from Moscow to St. Petersburg. I suddenly wished I was on Russian Railways [...]
Mar. 11th, 2015 01:43 pm (UTC)
Плацкартное приключение!
User phd_paul_lector referenced to your post from Плацкартное приключение! saying: [...] и английские слова достаточно схожи. Вы, думаю, помните, как я ездила на Сочинскую Олимпиаду [...]
Mar. 15th, 2015 04:41 am (UTC)
Как я бухала в Ярославле
User tamiranov referenced to your post from Как я бухала в Ярославле saying: [...] travel third class, and maybe meet some interesting bunk mates. When I took the long train ride [...]
Mar. 15th, 2015 11:10 am (UTC)
Welcome to the Ryazan)
Mar. 15th, 2015 04:44 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Mar. 17th, 2015 08:48 am (UTC)
Platzkart Adventure!
User gjlrfc3 referenced to your post from Platzkart Adventure! saying: [...] words overlap, or are very similar. You'll recall that when I traveled to the Sochi Olympics [...]
Oct. 13th, 2015 08:00 pm (UTC)
Out of curiosity. Has it been OK to take unauthorized pictures up to the present days?
I wish there were more guns in this country. (As it was before commies took 'em away)
Oct. 14th, 2015 01:17 pm (UTC)
Hmm, it's an interesting question. What does "unauthorized" pictures mean? You have the right to photograph anyone walking in a public space or street. There's no expectation of privacy in this cases, however in Russia it's more difficult than in the U.S. I was working with Russian Railways on the Sochi journey to write about my travel experience, so it was easier. However, when the train conductors first saw the camera they objected. It was necessary to call to headquarters and explain the situation. I usually shoot people at a distance. If I want to take a close-up photo, I always ask permission. In Russian stores, it's almost impossible. Leftover Soviet legacy and fear of spies. :))
(no subject) - 12x18h10t - Oct. 14th, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
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