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Written on: Tuesday February 13th, 2007

A journal entry from: Rouen Exchange

The journey started at Rouen train station, 12:50, just after lunch.  We took the train to Paris and then had to get from St. Lazare station to Paris l'Est.  So cool, we were able to find a car that had compartments so it felt just like we were on teh Hogwarts express!! (That's a Harry Potter thing for those of you who don't know).  Hannah wasn't a big fan of the cramped quarters and was even more upset when she found out the rest of the train was normal seats and not many of them were full. haha, oh well. After Paris the train went to Basel.  We almost didn't make it all the way there b/c it stopped for a really long time in Mulhouse and then we saw the train atendees walking on the platform so we thought it was our stop.  Luckily we asked what station we were at, just to be safe, and were able to jump back on the train before it was too late.  After 3 trains and 11 hours of traveling, Hannah, Celeste and I found ourselves at the Interlaken train station.  From here, we had to walk (with partial directions b/c Hannah got lazy at copying them down) to our hostel, named Funny Farm.  I guess it would seem strange when I stopped someone on the street and asked them where Funny Farm was.  We just hung out that night and got some sleep - well a bit.  We decided to but three of us in two single beds that had been pushed together. 

When we woke up, we found ourselves surrounded my huge mountains that had been disguised by the darkness the night before - incredible.  Breakfast consisted of delicisous loaves of bread, which between the three of us, we likely ate a whole loaf.  (We used some of it for lunch sandwiches though).  We walked around the main street, went to the tourist office and decided to take a train to Wengen which was higher up in the mountains.  It was only 25 CHF which is about equal to the CAD so it was a good deal.  The town was awesome - great views and it even had a club med! (Don't ask - Hannah is just obsessed).  Back in Interlaken for dinner, we knew that we had to get Fondue.  We went to Bebbis.  A very strange lodgey type place where the waitresses wore cow print skirts and all the employees were Asian.  The chocolate fondue was delicious but the cheese fondue definately wasn't.  Just a note for future travelers to Interlaken, chocolate fondue is not that common.  All the places have cheese fondue but chocolate is hard to come by.  That night we chilled in the common area of the hostel where there was a fire place and played some cards. 

The next morning we planned to be the first ones to breakfast so we could stock up with bread for the day.  Pretty much everything is closed on Sundays so we just walked around a bit, sat in a Restaurant and then went to the train station.  The wrong one to be exact.  You see, Interlaken has an East and West station. It didn't really matter but then we were all rushed b/c the train would be leaving a couple minutes earlier than we had been expecting.  We checked the board for the platform and ran and hopped on the train there.  It was  an awesome double decker train that even had a kids playground! The train was pretty empty and then an official looking person came and told us to get off the train (I think.  He was speaking German).  So we pick up our stuff and make our way down.  I'm the last to get off and as I am the train door starts closing.  Luckily I make it off a second before it starts moving b/c it turns out it was the wrong train!  Our pulled up about 5 minutes later.  WHo knows where we would have ended up.  The rest of the train ride was pretty uneventful other than when they were checking our tickets and I didn't have my student discount card on me and got fined 60 Euros. That wasn't the funnest.  We finally made it back to our residence just before 1 am.  Great trip - best travel yet by far.