Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 16:29
Something blocks the GPS signal on the way out of Cologne; I suspect the thick cloud doesn't help. It's not until the train passes through Düsseldorf that the receiver locks on to the satellites again.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 14:36
The ICE pulls smoothly out of Brussels. The pace feels more leisurely than that of the Eurostar, but in reality, the train still cruises along at over 150mph.
The countryside east of Brussels is flat and it seems like it's possible to see for miles over the open fields, which are occasionally interspersed with patches of woodland. The landscape becomes more hilly around Liege. It's only as I leave Liege that I finally get a network signal, having fallen into a kind of data black hole after entering Belgium.
Changing trains in Cologne on the way from London to Berlin.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 12:28
The weather becomes grey as the train speeds through France. The frost-tinged gold of the English fields has given way to deeper browns and greens, and dark clouds hang ominously in the sky. A little further on and the hum of the train's motors and whistling of the air around it is joined by the soft patter of rain as droplets are streaked across the windows. The further the train gets, the wetter the landscape seems to become. By the time we reach Belgium, the sky looks positively evil.
Getting on the ICE in Brussels, for the journey from there to Cologne - part of the journey from London to Berlin.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 09:02
Well, I've reached France!
Of course GPS trackers don't like tunnels very much, but I think you'll still get an idea of where the tunnel is. There's not a lot to be said about the journey through the tunnel itself, there's not a lot to see! In fact, it's so monotonous that the Eurostar trains are built with smaller windscreens than normal trains, so that the drivers don't get mesmerised.
My route now will be across northern France, then into Belgium, where I'll change trains in Brussels. With any luck, there should be plenty of time for an update then.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 08:34
The train races through the flat Kent countryside; I clock its speed at an eyeball-smooshing 186mph at one point. The morning is pastel coloured, with mist still creeping its way across the fields.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Sat, 07/11/2009 - 07:32
The sun is quickly rising over London and St Pancras International is very much awake, bustling with people.
The first time I came here in 2007 was a bit of an anticlimax; it had been opened to great fanfare a few weeks before, but it was really barely ready. The floors were still dusty from the building work and the Eurostar departures area was dark and rather featureless.
The starting point for the November 2009 journey to Berlin.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Fri, 06/11/2009 - 22:55
It's been a long couple of days...
The beginning of the journey is just a few hours away, yet questions of "are you packed yet?" are likely to be met with an exasperated "not yet" from me. Having dragged equipment round for concerts and video shoots the past couple days, I have to say the first thing on my mind is spending some hard earned quiet time with a cup of tea.
Submitted by Richard Carter on Fri, 02/10/2009 - 20:11
What are you going to be doing on November 7th? How about coming on a virtual journey across Europe with me?
With the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall this year, Berlin's history is coming increasingly into the public eye at the moment.