It's a strange sensation, stepping of a train after such an effortless cross-border voyage. In contrast to flying, it feels like you've hardly left your place of origin. But exiting to the unfamiliarities of a new locality, in this case Frankfurt's main Hauptbahnhof station, it doesn't take long for the acclimatisation process to commence.
Whilst I've worked in the rail industry for over a decade, I am first and foremost a rail traveller. And although I am currently living in Madrid, I am a regular traveller on the European rail network. So when I first heard about the proposed HS2 high-speed rail plans, one of my first thoughts was "what will this do for me?"
I've often wondered why rail travel provides more opportunities to converse than air travel and I've concluded that much of it has to be linked to the fact people have more space and sometimes sit facing each other during journeys. Seeing the historic Belgian city of Namur through the carriage windows, the dense forestation of the Ardennes and the skyline of Rotterdam prompted conversation among the people with whom I was sitting.
The first place I went to after getting off the train was le Sacré-Cœur in Paris which is the most exquisite church I have ever visited! It was of course inundated with people especially what with it being Easter but I still managed to squeeze myself through the tourists to get an aerial view of Paris.