The first night on the train wasn't too bad - we both got a reasonable amount of sleep as we were quite tired. We shared it with a Russian going overnight only (we are on the train for 3 nights/2 days). We tucked into our breakfast from the food we had bought - after finishing it we were a given a complementary meal - the Russian was surprised as well so don't know why we got it. The main part was not too good - cold chicken with cold mashed potato and sweet corn. The Russian tucked into his with gusto. We settled down to life on the train - reading and looking at all the trees as we go by - now know why the Russian say 'sent to Siberia to count the trees' - it would be a permanent exile! The Russian got off at Kirov - only to be replaced by another Russian with no English end even less humour. I managed to get off the train at a couple of stops - despite Fran's belief that she will be stranded on the train with me left on the platform. They sold all sorts on the platform - mainly booze and cuddly toys. (At Moscow there was a guy selling toolkits - don't know why - did he think the train would break down?). We went to find the restaurant car only to come across two other passengers - a couple of budgerigars - in a cage in the corridor - owned by one of the attendants. We had read about the carriage attendants and how fearsome they could be - ours is relatively young and very helpful. Not as obliging as the catering staff though, who seem to be girls in their 20s all made up and dressed very skimpily - Fran thinks they offer other services besides catering! We had dinner in the restaurant car which was expensive and pretty poor - I was told not to tip too much as it might lead to other services being offered. Things got better when we came back after dinner - the Russian who had joined at Kirov had got off and we had the cabin to ourselves.Day 2 on the train didn't start too well. Some Australians got on the train at Yekaterinburg at 2 o'clock in the morning. We got back to sleep eventually. We were probably as bad with the snoring. The scenery on the train is not very spectacular - a lot greener than expected - mainly trees and farmland with some swamp. We had expected wide open plains. Time goes by - apart from we have to keep 2 watches - one for Moscow time (the train timetables all run to that) and another to local time. It all gets a bit confusing. When we arrive in Tomsk we will have lost 3 hours.