The Orient Express

Dublin, March 2022

In April 2022 we went on a 2 day travel with the Orient Express. It was a fantastic travel from Amsterdam to Venice through five countries: Holland, Belgium, France, Switzerland and Italy. Before the train ride, we went around Holland to see tulips and finished off in Venice. And we teamed up with a new travelling companion: Nikolay.

Click each photo to enlarge


Part 1: Tulips in Holland.

Part 2: The Orient Express.

Part 3: Gondolas in Venice.


Part 2: The Orient Express

Dublin, Mar 2022

Roger got all excited when news came out, that our humans had booked a trip with the Orient Express, wow! The Orient Express became very famous when the world famous writer Agatha Christie published her book, "Murder on the Orient Express". Roger's imagination sprang into action as he visualized how Roger Poirot happened to be among the passengers when a murder took place on the train...

Roger took it for granted that the Travelling Bears would be invited to join their humans on the Orient Express. Roger also took it granted that he would be well equipped for the journey. After all, our lady human had been visiting a tailor to have a dress made in the fashion of the 1920s...

"Careful now!" he told his human, who was working dangerously close with the needle...




Dublin, Mar 2022

When the suit was finished, Roger tried it out in front of the mirror.
"How do I look?" he asked.
"Well, you look like somebody on their way to a gala dinner." Tom replied.
"You look like a passenger on the Orient Express." McBear added.
"Perfect answers!" Roger said. "I shall enjoy gala dinners on the Orient Express!"




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

Having spent some days seeing tulips in Holland, we went to Amsterdam Centraal Station. It was here, that the Orient Express would be departuring. We were all very excited as the engine in front of the Orient Express reached the platform 10 with 13 cars behind, wow! This was a moment we'd been looking forward to for... ages!




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

The cars were painted blue, a tradition from the time the train was known as "the Blue Train".




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

The staff welcomed us and carried our handbags. The rest of our luggage would be kept in secure locations and we wouldn't see it again until we would reach our final destination - our hotel in Venice. It was really a premium service!




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

Management and staffers lined up for photo sessions to welcome us.




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

It was a very shiny train with some impressive decorations. It was no wonder many people stopped to take photos.




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

There was even a band playing on the platform to celebrate the departure.
"I didn't know all the songs," Tom said, "...but at least I could sing along to Drinking Rhum and Coca Cola..."




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

We entered the train and walked down the corridors to find our cabin.




Amsterdam Centraal Station, Holland, Apr 2022

Each car had its own story. Our cabin was located in Car 3485. This car was built in Birmingham in England i 1929 and did its first five years of service with the Train Bleu - the blue train. From 1948 to 1971 it was in service by Simplon-Orient Express.




Holland, Apr 2022

Then we were settled in and off we went! From Amsterdam the Orient Express headed south.
Roger was still wearing his gondolier suit, but it was now time to change to something suitable: His brand new, tailored black suit.
"Will McBear and I be allowed in the lounge?" asked Tom a bit worried.
"Well, let's hope so," said Roger, "Just don't make yourself too noticed! We don't want to get kicked out before we've had our post-dinner coffee."
"Post-dinner coffee?" McBear said. "You make the expression sound so academic, almost poetic..."




Holland, Apr 2022

Confident, Roger went into the lounge and stood up on top of the piano.
"Wonder what would be appropriate to sing," he pondered. "Something post-world war 1 or perhaps something pre-world war 2..."




Holland, Apr 2022

Roger loved sitting in the lounge. His mind was somewhere in space as he started to fantasize...
"Who killed the manager?" he wondered.
"Maybe it was the ignorant monsieur Bastard, who owed the manager money..."
"Or maybe it was the evil mademoiselle Eville, who was very jealous..."




Holland, Apr 2022

Lunch was announced over the intercom. Gosh, it was posh to enter the luxurious dining car to enjoy a four course lunch.
"Careful now," Roger warned McBear, "there is an excess of calories on your plate..."




Belgium, Apr 2022

After lunch we went back to the lounge.
"I am sooo looking forward to some post-lunch coffee!" McBear stated.
"Post-lunch coffee? I thought we were going to have some pre-dinner coffee, "Tom said.




Brussels, Belgium, Apr 2022

We made a stop in Brussels in Belgium to allow more passengers onto the train. It was impressive to see a lot of trainspotters along the way, especially on the platform in Brussels. They obviously knew the time table for the Orient Express.
"I am impressed to see all these trainspotters..." McBear said.
"Trainspotters? I thought they were Roger spotters - that they were here to catch a glimpse of ME!"




Aulnoye-Aymeris, France, Apr 2022

Just after the train crossed the border to France, the train stopped in Aulnoye-Aymeris to change the engine locomotive. It meant a break to get out and stretch our legs.
"This platform looks like a serious gardening project," McBear laughed.
"How d'you mean?" asked Tom, "Is the platform in a pre-project state? It hardly looks in a post-project state."
"Very clever, you two! I am moving from a pre-annoyed state to the next stage, just so you know..." Roger stated.
"Maybe we should stop teasing Roger, would you agree, Tom?" McBear said. "We wouldn't want to see Roger in a post-erupted state..."




France, Apr 2022

At bed time the cabin steward had converted the comfortable couch into two berths. We had the upper berth and slept deep all night after an exciting day.
"How is Roger Poirot progressing with the murder case? Are you in a post-investigating or a pre-conclusion stage?" McBear wanted to know.
"McBear, that's the same stage." Roger pointed out. "That's like when you say post-lunch coffee versus pre-dinner coffee."
"Objection!" Tom interrupted. "Post-lunch coffee is normally fresh while pre-dinner coffee is often left over that's been in the jug so long it's gone stewed."




Switzerland, Apr 2022

Early next morning one of our humans had been to the train shop and here had spotted a steward bear sitting quietly in a stand. Our human decided it was time to invest in the future. We named him Nikolay after our highly valued steward, Nikolay.




Switzerland, Apr 2022

The landscape in Holland and Belgium had been flat, hilly in France, but after we entered Switzerland, the landscape turned mountainous with snowcapped peaks.




Chiasso, Italy, Apr 2022

The train stopped at Chiasso at the border between Switzerland and Italy. Once again the train was going to change the engine locomotive, this time to an Italian engine. We went out onto the platform, and it caused quite a stir as lots of people wished to have a photo of the famous travelling bears inkl. our latest member, Nikolay.




Chiasso, Italy, Apr 2022

Some people also wished to have a photo of our highly valued steward, Nikolay and the new member of the Travelling Bears, Nikolay.




Verona, Italy, Apr 2022

As we were now in Italy it meant different landscapes and more vineyards like here, just after we'd passed Verona, our last stop before the final destination.




Verona, Italy, Apr 2022

It was time to pack our gear and get ready to disembark.
"You don't need to carry your own luggage," said Roger. "Our humans will carry it for you."
"I like this upside-down world," Nikolay replied. "Your human is carrying the stewards' luggage..."




Venice, Italy, Apr 2022

Then we reached our final destination, the train station in Venice. There was a lot of farewelling and goodbyeing on the platform and the passengers were busy thanking the staffers for a wonderful trainride.




Venice, Italy, Apr 2022

It was time to pick up our luggage and say farewell to all the staffers. We would continue our travel among the Gondolas in Venice.




Part 1: Tulips in Holland.

Part 2: The Orient Express.

Part 3: Gondolas in Venice.




#Teddy Bears
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