I got on the train for Perm at the Yaroslavski train station in Moscow and we left right on time. The journey is 1,432 km and the travel time 22 hours.
For this leg, I was travelling Third Class in an open couchette. It was quite similar to open couchettes I’ve been on in China and Malaysia, but it seemed more roomy.
I sat opposite two young people – a brother and sister – who were travelling home to Perm. One of them spoke a bit of English, and they told me their mum was from Irkutsk when I told them about my travel plans.
I think I was surprised over how quiet this open carriage was. People just slept or talked quietly. Now and then they walked over to the hot water urn to make a hot drink. I was given my sheets straight away at 5.00 PM so I could make my bed whenever I wanted. In spite of being Third Class, it was quite comfy and I actually slept a whopping 12 hours. Can’t remember when I did that last.
With a time change from Moscow of two hours, the whole trip actually only took 20 hours, and we arrived five minutes ahead of schedule. Maybe the Russians could run some seminars for the people back home at Swedish Rail (SJ)? Even though I only go to Sweden once a year, several of the trains I end up taking are always late.
OK, time to explore Perm, next to the Ural Mountains on the European side. One thing I can say is that summer is back. It’s sunny and warm in Perm. Nice after the cold and rain in Tallinn, St.Petersburg and Moscow.