On the way to Reims
We are posting from the Lille train station. We started this morning from Gent where we stayed a night with Brit and Sibo, the couple that Adie spent a week with. We rode to the Gent Dampoort station and after some confusion we were told by a station attendant that there was a power cut (all Belgian trains are electric) and a delay for an unspecified amount of time. However, several minutes later the same attendant came over and said the train would be there at 9:00, only 12 minutes after it was scheduled to arrive. We thought to ourselves that if this was Amtrak it would take 3 days!
We boarded and took the train to Lille. We had planned on buying tickets to Reims in Lille because the websites were just not clear. We also had heard from Sibo that the best way to get to Reims was local trains though Saint Quentin, so that was the plan. When we got Lille we found the next train for Saint Quentin didn’t leave until 5:30. But we took it in stride and have spent several hours wandering around a cold, wet and mostly closed Lille. We were also surprised at the amount of homeless and trash compared to the dutch countries. I guess we had supposed Western Europe to be spotless.
Soon we ride to Reims and couchsurf with a guy named Sam-y who sounds nice. Then our grand tour really begins!