After a very smooth transit on the luxury National Express coach to Heathrow, an overnight stay in the very nearby and reasonable Thistle London then the hotel hoppa to terminal 5, I arrived in St Petersburg three and a half flying hours later at the start of rush hour.
And, without wanting to sound like a self obsessed nut job – I am so incredibly proud of myself right now! Just tucking into Sushi and a well deserved pint of the Heine after a freezing cold (-18oC) walk around St Petersburg, in the dark!
My accomodation for the next two days, Hostel Apple, looks like its in the ghetto (so its technicaly home from home), covered in graffiti, two flights up a derelict block of flats. Someone somewhere has some very entreprenuerial spirit (and no dounbt a mattress ful of cash) – however, clean once you’re in, staff are friendly and speak English fairly well and we’ll see when I wake up how secure it is!
Have already gone off the rucksack – might be better when its out of the carrying case and actually on my back, rather than getting nylon burn from the crappity temporary straps! Did make me bail on public transport from the airport due to weight and so I enlisted a taxi from the tourist information for 700 Rubels (even though I was told it wouild be 800 and the guidebook said 600 for foreigners). To be honest, for the less than £20 equivalent it cost (supplied by mum for Christmas – well done Margo) it was worth every penny.
Today’s Top Tip – Always take two copies of your paperwork everywehere – in case, for example, you take it out to give the taxi driver directions and then it falls out of your pocket from the aiport door to the car door and you have ABSOLUTELY no idea where you are or where you are going!
Anyways, now I’ve warmed up for half an hour ready to go and brave the elements again and head back to my shared dorm with two non-english speaking russian boys who emit booze fumes, but were rather helpful in getting my bottom sheet tucked into my mattress in one swift move! And no, that is not a euphemism.