So after waving goodbye to Garry's father and brother, we went to Mc Donalds to kill some time until our overnight train home arrived and was ready to board. Crystal was pretty excited about sleeping on the train, which was due to pull out of the station just before 11 pm. We found the correct track, wagon 14, the porter looked at our tickets and we boarded and went to the back of the train, where our bunks were.
There was a lady making up one of the beds... Garry asked her, she showed her ticket, same bunk number. A nearby lady looked at our tickets and said yours are for tomorrow. Oh, no, Garry had accidentally booked the wrong date online, and we never noticed when we printed the tickets. He raced back in the terminal to try to change the tickets, with the three of us trailing behind. At least Crystal got to see the inside of the overnight train...
No luck, tonight's train to Dnepro was fully booked, the next train heading to Dnepropetrovsk would be leaving in the morning. Garry bought tickets for the 7 am fast train, and then had to hunt for the ticket booth (at the other end of the station, it turned out) where he could get a refund on the first set of tickets. Micah bought a charger for their phones at a kiosk, Garry phoned Max to tell him our new arrival time, since he was picking us up in the morning. Too bad we didn't see it sooner, maybe we could have switched them for a ride the right day, now to get a couple hours sleep.
Then we all went outside to find a hotel. A taxi diver assured Garry he could find a close, not expensive hotel, and he "had a meter" when Garry tried to pre-agree on price (he did not, it turned out). He drove us to a nearby Ibis Hotel, where ten people had just got out of a van, and were checking in. Garry came back out to report the price was twice as much as the driver said. He offered "mini hotel?" Then we went to a half dozen small (and full when Garry got out to check in) hotels, getting further and further from the train station.
Finally Garry said drive us back to the train station, we'll sleep in the wooden seats. It seemed about ten minutes later we saw the station, but he turned and "a miracle ?" found an open hotel with nice rooms. Garry went inside with the driver. The driver came out ten minutes later and wanted us to pay him, I told him Garry had the money. Finally, ten minutes later, he led us inside and we all went upstairs in the elevator, were Garry was in a room with his shoes off waiting for us. He told Garry he wanted 700 grinva, Garry said it was too much, we had sent the other taxi to Borispol (25 Km) for 300. Garry handed him 200 grivna and pushed him out the door. These foreigners weren't paying for a drive around.
We settled into the nice beds after setting phone alarms, and got to sleep quickly. In the morning the taxi cost 35 grivna to return (via the direct route) and we raced onto the train and were in Dnepro at 1 o'clock instead of the 7 am we had planned. Garry had been on the phone to reschedule a planned appointment from 10 am to 2 pm. I had my book reader, we bought drinks and sandwiches, Micah and Crystal had their charged phones to play on, eventually they shared a phone so Garry could watch shows with the wifi too, so the time passed quickly.
It's Saturday morning now and I need to get some things done before I go take some photos of them pouring cement. Micah and Crystal fly out at 7 am from Dnepro airport in the morning, so we'll need to set those alarms again. It's been quite the visit and we may get Crystal out to see the famous Zaporosia Oak yet this afternoon.