Day 12: Lucerne/Geneva (23 Mar) #1

Now, in my previous post, I mentioned that the derailed Trenitalia train brought down a catenary with it. This in turn tripped power to the Lucerne train station, besides smashing through a set of tracks as well. Damage like this isn’t easy to fix, and there was no way the station could open just a day after the incident.

So, lost and blind, I turned to the Internet. This particular post highlighted 2 possible alternatives to get to Geneva: Emmenbrucke and Sursee.

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Sursee and Emmenbrucke pinned with red circles, Lucerne with a green one. Ebikon, which was my alternative transit station to/from Zurich is pinned with a blue circle. Rotkreuz is to the north-east of Ebikon.

However, the user who posted it also noted the uncertainty regarding the replacement services that SBB was running. And with Luzern Bahnhof still shut, I elected to go the safe way: Back to Zurich and down to Geneva from there.

So it was back the same way I came back from Zurich yesterday: Bus to Ebikon, S1 to Rotkreuz and a train to Zurich. From there, it was just a matter of spotting the right train on the platforms and hopping on it.

Oddly, when I was waiting for the lift to take me down to the hotel lobby for check out, the alarm for the room right next to the elevator went off. At first I didn’t recognize the odd tone as a fire alarm, and just like stupidly stood there wondering what on earth was that alarm. Was it my phone? It wasn’t until a couple housekeeping staff on the same floor rushed past and told me that it was the fire alarm and ushered me down the stairs did I know what was going on. Switzerland had definitely been interesting for me so far: a derailment, taking the wrong train and a fire alarm going off right next to me…

And of course, the weather over Lucerne and Rigi was clear and perfect today. Of course…

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Another twin-decked train coming in when we were pulling out. Not sure which station it was.

From Zurich, the train to Geneva will bypass Lucerne entirely, avoiding the mess that’s down there. Eventually, the train would call at about half a dozen stations, including Bern and Lausanne.

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I was seated in a single corner seat on the upper deck, right where the stairs were. The luggage rack is directly to the right of the picture and also relative to me, enabling me to make a quick dash for the doors if needed.

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At a little past noon, I was feeling a little hungry and thus I went in search of the restaurant coach. It was a few coaches down from the one that I was in, but I did see the attendant roll by with his cart a couple times before.

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The onboard restaurant’s menu.
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Pasta bolognese, comes with a side of bread and a couple packets of cheese powder. Not sure if this is the way to eat it, but I digress.

Choices were pretty limited, but I went with the Pasta Bolognese. It’s not too shabby for a train meal, but it was dry and on the bland side of tastes. But hey, it’s still food, though it ain’t cheap either. 15.9 CHF for a plate of pasta and some bread on a paper plate with plastic utensils.

After lunch, it was back to gazing out of the windows!

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Green rolling hills, where else would you see this?
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Approaching Geneva. There were several instances of the train passing magnificent mountains, but the reflection from the windows always ruined the shots.

Next stop: Geneva!

 

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