The Anonymous Widower

Will NightJet Connect To Eurostar?

NightJet is Austrian Railways sleeper service, that they took off the hands of the Germans when they closed it as a waste of money.

Ridership is increasing and they will be bringing in new trains in the next few years.

They also appear to have formed a partnership with Hungarian, Croatian and Polish Railways to take the network further East.

But what about the West? NightJet serves German cities like Cologne and Frankfurt, which are on Eurostar’s wish list.

Frankfurt is boring, but Cologne is the sort of city where you can fill time enjoyably.

So will we see travellers taking a morning Eurostar to Cologne, spend a day in the city and then take an overnight NightJet to Vienna. Vienna is linked by more NightJet services to places that non-European tourists love.

I don’t know the Austrian psyche well. But it does seem to me, that they have taken a loss-making Getman sleeper network and may succeed in turning it jnto something profitable and worthwhile with a little help from their friends. Do Austrians like getting one over the Germans?

A Eurostar connection in the West at Cologne and possibly in Switzerland, where NightJet runs to Zurich, would surely be beneficial. Eurostar have ambitions on Geneva and the connections between the two Swiss cities are good and picturesque!

I feel that we could be seeing the takibg of train tourism to a new level. How cuvilised?


March 26, 2019 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Zillertalbahn Orders Stadler Hydrogen-Powered Trains

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on the International Railway Journal.

This is the first paragraph.

Austria’s narrow-gauge Zillertalbahn announced on May 15 that Stadler is the successful bidder for a €80m contract to supply five hydrogen fuel cell multiple-units.

The Zillertal Railway is in the Tyrol district of Austria and has a gauge of 760 mm.

It looks like Stadler are supplying another market, that is rather special.

August 6, 2018 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | 2 Comments

From Villach To Munich

This section of route had the major stop at Salzburg.

It was still raining, but at least I was clean and dry in First Class.

It would have been a much better trip in the sun, as for a lot of the route, the train runs on the Tauern Railway 

Even my wet pictures show how spectacular it could be.

May 13, 2016 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

From Ljubljana To Villach

I took these pictures on the section of the journey from Ljubljana to Villach.


  • The line is the Tarvisio-Ljubljana railway until Jesenice station effectively marks the border between Slovenia and Austria.
  • After Jesenice, the line enters the nearly five mile long; Karawanks tunnel.
  • There would appear to be a new station at Faak Am See or Lake Faak. Could it be a place to go camping or stay overnight?
  • Long trains of cars are more common in Europe than in the UK.

At least the weather seemed to be getting a little bit better.

May 13, 2016 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

The Floods In Central Europe

A few weeks ago I was in Budapest, Bratislava, Vienna and Southern Germany.

Now it seems that much of the area is under water, as the BBC reports.

I know it was only luck, but I certainly got my timing right.

I’ve never ever been flooded out in a house and I don’t ever want to be.

My hearts go out to all of those who are suffering.

June 3, 2013 Posted by | World | , , , , | Leave a comment

A Circular Journey In The Snow

Very often on a Sunday I go across the Emirates Air-Line cable car, have a tea, coffee or lunch somewhere and then return home by a different route.

Today with all the snow, was just too good to miss.

My route was to walk to Dalston Junction station and then get a train south to Shadwell.  I then took the DLR from there to the cable car.  I came back via Canary Wharf, where I had a cup of tea and the London Overground back to the start.

The only problem, was that visibility wasn’t that good, but it was what the cable-car is for.  It must have felt pleased to be in the land of its birth; Austria.

January 20, 2013 Posted by | Transport/Travel, World | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

What Is A Pastafarian?

The answer’s here!

It shows that the Austrians have a better sense of humour than I thought!

July 13, 2011 Posted by | News | , | Leave a comment

The Waste Incinerator at Edmonton

Whilst I was in IKEA, I took this picture of the waste incinerator at Edmonton.

The Waste Incinerator at Edmonton

To some the incinerator is controversial and some such as Greenpeace want it shut down.

The solution to a lot of rubbish is recycling, but then the proportion recycled in London is lower than in many other parts of the country. It is probably easier to get people to sort their rubbish in larger sizes of dwelling, as they have more space for the various bins. So at the end of the day, there will be either a lot of waste for landfill or incineration. Hackney tries hard and the recyclers are a sensible bunch, but are all of the residents.

So whether people like it or not, there will always be a need for incineration.

Perhaps we should follow the Austrian solution.

Fridenreich Hundertwasser was a controversial Austrian artist and architect.

I remember seeing somewhere that he didn’t like incinerators, so Vienna asked him to see if he could do better.  He came up with the waste powered heating system at Spittelau powered by waste.

District Heating System at Spittelau

It certainly looks better than Edmonton.

So perhaps we should get the best artists and architects to design incinerators and other buildings like power stations and sewage works so we can be proud of them. Isn’t that what Joseph Bazalgette did with Abbey Mills? Obviously, we must also get the technology right, so the only things that emerge from the plant is energy and clean air and water.

A properly designed plant would be so much better than the alternative of landfill.

The other technology we need is an automatic system that sorts rubbish into the various types of recyclables  and what must be buried or burnt.  But that will come in the next few years!

I’m also very much in favour of rewarding councils that recycle a high proportion of their waste. trucks are easily weighed on leaving and return from the depots, so it is easy to work out how much rubbish is recycled overall. You could even work it out on a round-by-round basis and reward the operatives and residents appropriately.

But I am against weighing individual bins, as that is unpopular on the one hand and could lead to all sorts of unsavoury practices on the other.

I do think though, that it might be possible to incentivise people to recycle bottles and akuminium cans, by paying a collective bounty to the area round the recycling points.  I laid out my thoughts here.

May 4, 2011 Posted by | World | , , , | 2 Comments

The Third Man

I hadn’t seen this film before and as BA had a large number of films on the entertainment system, I chose to watch it.  It is a marvellous story, but you’d expect that as it was written by Graham Greene, an author that is always worth reading.  He’s actually a good read if you don’t like long books, as some of his best are about two hundred pages.  They are just as fresh as when they were written.

The film is good and often rated as one of the best films ever made.  It was shot in the ruins of Vienna and mostly at night or in the sewers, so to call it a dark film would not be an understatement.

Years ago, I met a man called Roland Landman, who was in The Guards and they were some of the soldiers who liberated Vienna from the Nazis.  He said that the city was in a dire way and for example, if you wanted a woman, that would cost just two cigarettes. We don’t know what poverty is!

There was talk that Austria would end up under Russian domination and according to Rolnad it was touch and go, whether the Austrians decided to throw in their lot with the communists.  But he told the story of the Major in the Irish Guards, who said that the people needed entertainment and that being Irish, they should organise a horse race meeting.

Everybody thought he was barmy, but they did.

The finery came out, everybody had a good time and Austria stayed in the West.

Whether this tale is true or not, I do not know, but after seeing The Third Man last night, I can understand it a lot more.

Let’s hope we never go through any more wars like that.

May 13, 2010 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment