Right. I think I’ve actually overdone myself in madness this time. But I believe in that simple-twist-of-fate I was talking about even more now.
Let me tell you what my plan was – yesterday. Oh : long post alert.
I wanted a holiday where I could relax, mentally. I have considered a week on the beach in Spain, but really that isn’t me anymore. Then I thought about the fact that I love travelling by train so much. It calms me down, I love that you can stare out of the window and see the landscape pass by. Or just put some music in your ear and disappear for some time. And I always get very inspired to write in the train. So something with a train would be good, I thought.
And if I am going to travel by train, why not do it the crazy way. I have never been to Russia, and Moscow has long been high on my list of cities I want to visit. So I start by flying from London to Moscow, and be there a few days. And then I will step on the train. And that train will take me through Russia, and Mongolia, and after about 6 days and a bit, I will hop off in China. In Beijing to be precise. I am taking the Trans Mongolian train from Moscow to Beijing. I don’t do any stop overs, I am just going to sit and sleep and live in this train, watch the landscape, think a bit, write a bit, meet people, and most of all – relax and enjoy the journey.
Now the original plan was that I would stay in Beijing for a couple of days, and from there, I would fly home to London.
What I hadn’t written about yet, because it is too embarrassing, and it is crazy, and you are going to say I’m stupid and silly and pathetic and too much – but here we go – apart from this whole train trip – I simply needed to see The Vertical Hour one more time, because it makes me intensely happy to see Bill Nighy perform. Go on – get it out – shout – scream – get tired of me – whatever. And this was all fine, as the last performance of this play was planned for the 1st of April and I had already booked tickets for that, ages ago.
I felt a slight hesitation yesterday to book everything for this train trip, and I waited one more day to actually do it. In stead of going to the Visa office yesterday, something in my head whispered I had to wait until today. I booked my visas this morning, and was planning to book the rest this afternoon (flights, trains, hotels). On the train to work this morning, a message popped up on my mobile. The Vertical Hour is closing 3 weeks earlier than planned, which meant that the tickets for the play I had were turned into useless pieces of paper (they get refunded – don’t worry). This wasn’t the worst thing, the worst thing was that the final closing date of The Vertical Hour now is changed to be the 11th of March. Had I booked yesterday I would have been in Beijing at that date.
But I didn’t book yesterday (I love those simple twists of fate). And so today I changed my somewhat crazy travelplan into an insane one, and it now look like this:
24th of February – Flight from London to Moscow
27th of February – at 21.30 I board the train in Moscow
5th of March – at 15.00 I arrive in Beijing in China (China! – I can’t believe it)
7th of March – I fly from Beijing to – I really have to do this there is no way around it – New York (I have new tickets for Bill already – so don’t let them change the dates again or I am going to scream!)
12th of March I fly from New York to London.
For me this journey simply has to end with Bill. And while I originally had a less hectic schedule, as I would have done the train journey, get home for a couple of days, and would then have left for New York again, I kind of like the way it is now. It is going to be a big big journey in several ways. I don’t know anything about China or Beijing or Moscow for that matter. Lots of impressions. But no matter what happens on that train ride, I am 100% sure my journey will have the best ending it can possibly have.
I am overly exited. And really nervous too.
My visas will only be ready a few days before departure so let’s hope they don’t get delayed somewhere as that would really mess things up.
And I haven’t heard anything from the train ticket agency yet either. I have now!
It is an insane trip. But I guess that’s how things go if you plan with your heart and soul in stead of with common sense.
Oh, on the above map (click for larger version) – I forgot to draw the line from New York back to London. Fear not, I will return to London. Green line is plane to Moscow, red line is train journey, and blue is plane to New York. It’s quite a trip.
I am ready for your:
– 6 days in a train – you got to be kidding – you will be bored to death
– oh no not Bill again
There is no way back for me now anyway and that feels so good.