It’s not even 19:00 here in Thailand but we’ve already had the beds nade up by the staff in my sleeper coach, not that I mind, I’m tired and happy to lie down and compose today’s blog. Charlotte and Adi are in the next coach, which has received the sane treatment.

I must admit, I did enjoy a lie-in until 08:00 today. Having the luxury of a fresh, soft bed and an air-conditioned room made it hard to resist! Even so, I was checked out well in advance of time so that I could move up to Bang Sue Grand Central by taxi. You never know how long it’s ging to take by road so I always leave plenty of time as the plan was to have a ‘play’ on the new sections of the blue line MRT railway which I’d photographed being built but had never ridden on. And, as I’d have a wheelie suitcase in tow, I could test out their accessibility.

I was rather disappointed. The stations are all good when it comes to access, with lifts and escalators (and helpful staff) but the platform/train interface (PTI) isn’t. There’s a noticeable gap and difference in levels that mean you have to lift your suitcase on and off or risk it getting stuck – and maybe rip a wheel off. I can’t understand how this happens on a new railway with a new fleet of trains to compliment the existing ones.

Another thing I noticed on the section from Bang Sue Westwards to the end of the line is how difficult photography is due to the placing of platform barriers, lineside equipment and roadside cables. All conspire to make clean shots as difficult as possible. Admittedly, I didn’t try every station as I had a suitcase with me, but I did visit several. I’ll add a couple of shots tomorrow when I’ve access to wifi. But what the lines elevated position is good for is offering some great panoramic views of central Bangkok. I’d liked to have explored further but that’s going to have to wait until later in the trip.

Back at Bang Sue I met up with Charlotte and Adi (my neice and her husband) who’d come down on the sleeper train from Chiang Mai earlier this morning. It was great to see them and hear some of their travel tales. We swapped a few more on the train before our enforced ‘bedtime’ when I had to go back to my own coach. No doubt we’ll add some new stories from George Town when we get there…

One of SRTs new Chinese built locos at the head of our train to Hat Yai and Padang Besar.

Oh, talking of level access, I nipped out to visit the old Bang Sue station which is right next door to the new. When I looked for a way acoss I noticed this. How many faults can you spot?