Our Interrail trip started in Oulu, where we live. Already this fact ended up to be a trouble.
You have to know that Finnish railway is different from all the other railways in Europe. That’s because it was built during the time when Finland was under Russian rulership. So there is no train connection between Finland and Sweden. That’s why we had to take a bus till Haparanda, the first Swedish city on the other side of the border.
Here it started all the misunderstanding. From the Interrail timetable it showed that something (we of course thought a train) would leave from Haparanda and connect us to Luleå. We arrived at the Haparanda main bus stop at 9 am Finnish time (hence 8 am Swedish time). The “train” would have left only at 12.30 pm so we thought we had all the time in the world ahead of us. Since the bus stop happened to be very close to Ikea, we even went there to hang around. After this long digression, we started walking toward the railway station. Of course, our speed was not even callable speed. We would just walk hand in hand, looking at the landscapes, at the houses and the gardens, our heads in the clouds. After half an hour of walking, there it is! The Haparanda railway station. So beautiful!!
“Ok, this is all very nice. Let’s get inside now!”. That’s when we started realizing something was deeply wrong in there. Every door was locked, there was no way to get inside the building and that place looked everything but a working railway station. What to do?? The only solution then, in the middle of an abandoned place, was to Google it. And there is where we found the answer. No, we weren’t dreaming. Haparanda actually has a railway station, but the line is now only used for freight!! After some panic moments (if we would have lost that train or whatever, we would have also lose all the other coincidences all the way till Vienna!), an idea started pushing in our minds: what if the Interrail timetable was actually referring to a bus? We had no choice but to go back to the bus stop, after all there was nothing for us in that dead railway station.
No time to admire the landscapes now: we just had to run. Luckily we got to the bus stop just in time to catch the bus headed to Luleå!