Sunday, August 12, 2012

Leaving on that midnight train to...

Leaving on that 10 p.m. train to Kiev. I was actually looking forward to Sharon and Bennett getting to experience the infamous "night train" to Kiev. I have been sharing for years about what an experience that it! I knew that finally they would get a true Ukrainian experience like I had been talking about for YEARS! NOT!!! I had Sharon take her camera when we first got on the train so she could take a picture of "the bull". Now, any of you who have had the privilage to ride on the JOY Bus Express on Youth Mission trips during the 80's and 90's KNOW what "riding the bull" was like. are on a train...swaying on the tracks...moving fairly quickly...a watery substance is all over the floor...the smell is...well maybe you don't want to imagine the toilet paper (or the Ukrainian version of sandpaper might be available) ... a water faucet like none you have ever been around (at least there is water)...not a paper towel in sight...when you lift the lid from the stainless steel toilet seat you can see moving tracks going by under the train...the place is dark at best and very dreary looking in the black and brown color palette chosen for this train...and to top it off it isn't very clear how to LOCK the door (as was my experience at 3 in the morning when I was busy hanging on for dear life while using the facility as the door popped open)! I was clapping my hands in glee with the anticipation of showing someone else the notorius night train. I could feel the accolades coming as the badge of honor for surviving such a plight were rained down on me! So what to my inquiring eyes does 8 tiny reindeer! But what did appear was a REAL bathroom. With a shiny clean floor...clean commode...pristine conditions....(still the same water faucet)...NO smell...NO messy floor...NO filthy black/brown color on every surface???? What's up with this? I couldn't believe my eyes!! Sharon's eyes were saying to me "So...another thing that wasn't like it was last year...huh? All I can say is "That isn't fair!!!" Not only did the bathroom not look ANYTHING like it did last time...they had AIR CONDITIONING! And WI/FI in the train station!!! What is this world coming to!! The beds were comfortable (in a 'campy' sort of way)...and the bottom bunk had enough head room to sit up comfortably EVEN when the top bunk was DOWN!! WHAT????!! My hopes of glorious kuddos were dashed on the rocks of "Euro 12" soccor mania which has greatly improved the standars in Ukarine. The night was uneventful, the room temp was good, the sheets were included in the payment for the room. What a difference a year makes? Oh pashaw...what a differenc a MINUTE makes!!! Untill another adventre starts!

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