Жаловаться хочу

Решил тут заранее купить билеты на поезд Питер-Москва.

РЖД

Первым делом полез на сайт РЖД. Что удивительно, сайт работает, сайт ищет и сайт находит поезда. Из минусов, делает он это не очень хорошо.

Первая проблема, с которой я столкнулся, заключалась в том, что я искал ночной поезд. Ночные поезда отправляются где-то с 11и вечера до 2х ночи. К сожалению, сайт не поддерживает поиск с диапазоном отправления с началом и концом в разных сутках. Поэтому если я хочу заказать билет скажем на вечер 21го мне приходится искать два раза, c начала на 21ое (билеты с 11и до 12и часов) затем не 22ое (с 12и до 2х). Я согласен, фича довольна специфичная, но что-то мне подсказывает, что не один я покупаю билеты Питер – Москва (ну или Москва – Питер).

Проблема номер два. Нет возможности сразу купить билет туда и обратно, сначала ишещь и покупаешь билет в одну сторону, а потом в другую. Будет весело если человек в одну сторону найдет и купит, а обратного не будет…

Проблема третья. Не возможно фильтровать билеты по стоимости. Пока на конкретный поезд не кликнешь сколько стоят билеты не узнаешь.

Ну и последняя капля, когда я все-таки выбрал один из поездов и заполнил всю информацию о себе, с меня почему-то затребовали 2750 рублей, хотя две минуты назад я выбрал билет за 2400. Самое обидное что никакого объяснения за что они берут больше нет.

Яндекс и все-все-все

Отчаявшись я полез в Яндекс искать где еще можно купить билеты и оказалось, что Яндекс и сам рад их мне продать. Тут и поиск был немного поудобней, да и дизайн сайта по-приятней. Только жаль сам Яндекс только помогает найти билеты, а продает их нечто под названием UFS. Тут все как у взрослых. Чтоб заплатить карточкой надо пройти через хитрую процедуру добавления и подтверждения.  Однако этот UFS почему-то не любит американские карточки. Обычные интернет магазины (российские в том числе) любят, а эта сволочь нет :(

Конец

В общем, придется покупать билеты по-старинке.

P.S.

Никто не подскажет хороший и недорогой поезд?

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A Little Trip to LA or I Can’t Believe I Did It

I was very lucky to get a one week vacation after working a little at my new job. So I decided to drive to Los Angeles for couple days. Since my car isn’t in the best condition I decided to rent something cheap but hopefully more reliable than my car for this adventure.

I was planning to move out on the morning of the 25th when everybody’s at home celebrating Christmas so the freeways would be truly free :)

But the downside was that no rental would work on the 25th so I woke up early on the 24th and drove to several rentals close to my home.

First I visited Hertz (probably because that’s the best known name), then Avis (I also had heard of it before), then United Alamo (never heard of it before, but it appeared to be located just in the middle of the first two) and finally Budget (which I noticed on my way home).

Most of them didn’t have any cars :(

So I guess it’s a good idea to make a reservation beforehand.

The prices where pretty much the same, just Budget was a little cheaper.

The bad news where that since I’m not 25 years old yet I would have to pay extra $25 for each day. But that still wasn’t too bad.

The worst part was that Budget was the only one that a had a car for decent money and they wouldn’t give a car to someone who is under 25 and doesn’t have a credit card. In the other places they would accept debit cards but as I said they didn’t have cars.

So I ended up saving some money and taking the risks. But hey my car took me to LA in just 6 hours and got me back home in a little more than that due to some traffic.

It’s better late then …

It has been quite some time since I’ve returned from Netherlands but I never managed to put some photos here. So I’ll try to make up for that with the following series of funny photos (feel free to click on them):

This is a nice cafe in Antwerpen:

Note: Panos in Russian means “diarrhea”

Dangerous hatch cover:

Please zoom in

Gentleman in Amsterdam (Red Lights District):

And you can see some more here

Back from Tallinn

Just returned from Tallinn, Estonia

It was a rather short trip so I didn’t have time to explore the city. I’ve spent most of my time in the historical center of the city.

The center of Tallinn is rather hilly. And I loved that cause I’m kind of tired of flatness of Saint Petersburg. And I really enjoyed just wondering around in the center.

Reflected Photo

Only once we had a chance to go really far ( that means we took a bus :) ). It was when we decided to take a look at the city from far above and traveled to the TV tower. It’s pretty high, the sight area is at 174 meters and it’s only half way up. But unfortunately the view sucked :(. So if you ever go to Tallinn forget about the TV tower, better climb on to the Olivest tower if it’s open or at least visit Radison SAS hotel roof.

As of language I developed a simple algorithm: if the person you want to ask is young then use English, otherwise use Russian (oops, of course if you know it)

For those who know Russian, you can visit my friends blog he has more photos and nice review of Tallinn sights.

Sicily

I’ve been on a vacation recently. I took some notes and tons of photos. So here there are my notes + some photos to make you jealous.

Day 1
• Flight
– Was nice. Good company: one 35-40 year old man and one 20 year old tall and skinny girl. She tried to be little snobby but that didn’t last long cause the man is very talkative.
• Bus travel
– The bad news were that we need to travel another 304 km to our hotel. Good news again – good company: all the same + a 25 year old dj, a pretty girl and a talkative woman.
It took ~5 hours. First impression of Sicily was: ‘Wow this looks familiar’. At first glance it looked much like Tenerife.
• Hotel President

– It’s really close to beach. But they messed up with rooms. As a result, we’ve got a room w/o balcony, that kind of sucked. My roommate is a nice gentleman, but he’s too upset with shortcomings of this hotel.

Day 2
• Breakfast
– Pretty fast :)
• Beach
– Water was super, clean and clear. Nice sea shore. Great sun.
• Dinner
– Good and tasty
• Excursion to Noto

– The city is nice but the rain didn’t make me too happy. I tried real Italian “caffe”. But I still don’t like coffee.
• Supper
– Super supper. Nice food, strange talks.

Day 3
• Beach
• Dinner
– Strange news at the beginning of dinner. Some history: active ones of our group have tried to change our schedule the way they needed and didn’t inform the hosting party. As a result: our program is cut down to visiting hotels.
• Taormina

– We only visited hotels but the Captaormina hotel was fantastic.

Day 4
• Syracuse

– A very nice excursion to the ancient city (8th century b.c.)
Visited ancient amphitheater and the old city.
• Beach
– Took some sun bath, swam a little in the ionic sea and in pool. An old man from our group shared his background on geopolitical situation in near east.
• Walk

Day 5
• Catania

– Catania is second biggest city in Sicily.
We happened to arrive on a day when there was big bicycle trial show. There were many spots all around the center.
Unfortunately I didn’t find a Puma store …
• Etna

– It’s the biggest (highest and most active) working volcano in europe.
My impression – Fantastic.
I had a feeling like I’m on other planet. Black ground around and steam everywhere + we were there the morning after the night when new eruption had started and it was still erupting when we were up there.

Day 6
• Taormina

– Finally we are able to visit the old taormina.
Fantastic, very very nice place, high in the mountains, smashing views.

Day 7
• The move
– We are leaving the president hotel on the east of the isle and moving to Citta del mare on the west. Nothing special just 4-5 hours in bus talking with this lawyer girl about nothing.

• Citta del mare
– Huge compared to our previous hotel. A lot of different activities available.
I checked out the beach, it’s all rocks. But it’s fine if u r careful.

Day 8
• Palermo

– We are in historical center of the city. A lot of churches. Very diverse architecture.
• Monreale

– A little town built next to palermo by one of local rulers after he had quarreled with the church.

Day 9
• Cefalu

– Nice little town. I found 2 stores with t-shirts but one didn’t have original ones and the other had none with player names.

Day 10
• Palermo (Shopping)
– Unfortunately I found genuine Italy jersey only in one place and they didn’t have it with player names :(
• Erice

– High in the mountains. Very nice views. Heh there is a math institute here :)
• Segesta

– Just an ancient temple. But this stuff is beautiful.