Long live to conductors!
Drinking a tea in the train while we’re approaching Tobolsk. This is the way my day starts. I’m very relaxed. I slept perfectly in my “own” compartment, with no one disturbing me. What a difference with previous night train ride! In the ‘breakfast box’ offered by Russian Railways there is a decent muffin that is fitting perfectly with the black tea. Railway station is very far from town, something like ten kilometres but there should be a bus going downtown. Once we’re arrived I pack my things and I reach the apron facing the station waiting for bus. But how far we’re really from town? I would like to find an answer in the GPS of my phone but there is a problem. Where is my phone? OMG! I left it in the train. I was really too relaxed. I run back to train that it’s still there. I jump down the desert rails going next to my coach. Door is closed and stairs I used to come down were put away since the train is likely going to leave. I yell calling the conductor (cabin attendant) and in a while she opens the door with my phone and my charger in her hands! How I love her! It was really last minute rescue because the train leaves the station while I’m reaching back the platform. I left all my luggages there but honestly I didn’t feel at risk and everything is actually still there. Bus to town is gone and I don’t want to wait for next one so I take a taxi. After all this stress I need it.
Something is happening…
My hotel is a Soviet style “gostinica”. At the reception they don’t speak english but ok, we find the way to understand each other. The importante thing is that they give me the room immediately and not only that, they even serve me breakfast, in the room!. Some noodles, bread and cheese. Not my style but not bad in the end. I take a shower and I go immediately in town. I need to take a bus because Kremlin is about 4 km far. Along the road I notice a building with periodic table of elements painted on it. It is appropriately located in Mendeleev street. This is not by case. Dmitri Mendeleev was born in Tobolsk in 1834 and for sure he is the most famous citizen of the town. I left showers in Yekaterinburg but here the weather is still mostly cloudy and it doesn’t allow to fully appreciate the beautiful square where the Kremlin is located. Differently from Moscow, Novgorod and Kazan, here separation between Kremlin and town seems to be less evident. The square is not part of the fortress but it is hard to define where it ends the square and it starts the Kremlin. By the way, I guess there is something running here. I see group of people dressed in traditional costumes. I first think about some folk group but after a while I notice that there are also an orthodox priest, other religious people, many police officials with different kind of uniforms, mostly police women, one with a police dog. This doesn’t look normal and in fact after a couple of minutes I see that they’re turning some sort of promotional video. It is maybe for the town or who knows what, however in my opinion they want to give the idea of a united community in favour or against who or what I don’t know.This post continues to next page