The Hotel Corinthias (27) was everything we expected and more. Nice, clean rooms, friendly, almost overly helpful staff and inside, secure parking for the car!
One of the problems we were facing and had not yet worked out, was where to leave the car while we were at the Copper Canyon. When we asked at the hotel if there was a possibility of leaving our car there while we were gone, they said yes! Of course, we had to pay for a night's lodging in advance for when we got back. But we would have to pay that anyway. Problem solved and one less worry on our backs.
For dinner that night, we visited a quaint little Chinese buffet. The food was excellent. They even had one of my favorites, Sweet and Sour Soup. I almost didn't even want to bother with main courses. It was that good. Of course I did though! Once we eaten our fill, it was back to the hotel and in bed early. We had a very, very early start the next day and a long day it was to be too!
One of the perks offered by our hotel was free taxi service to the train station! At 770 pesos per night, we were certainly getting our monies worth! We arrived at the train station at 5:00 AM while it was still dark out. The waiting room was very tiny with a serious lack of sitting space for the throngs of people there waiting for the train. And there were vendors or things offered for sale. I was surprised by this as Mexicans are very ingenious in making a buck wherever there is a crowd to spend money. There wasn't even a vending machine in sight. But we were in luck.
Or so we thought. Across the parking lot was a small booth, complete with iron bars over the front window. One placed one's order, the clerk got it, you paid and stepped aside for the next person in line. We ordered three coffees. What we got was three Styrofoam cups of hot water and three packets of Nescafe instant powder. No cream, no sugar, no spoon. Oh well, it was hot anyway. It was cold that early in the morning. And did I mention the mosquitoes? Swarms of them. It was awful.
Back across the parking lot, sipping our coffee and B and I chain smoking as we waited, we noticed a large group of teen aged girls being dropped off by their parents and congregating in little groups. They were as loud and obnoxious as any group of 12-13 year old girls can be. We hoped that they would not be in our car. And they weren't. They were, however, in the car behind us and had to pass by us in order to get to the dining car. Which they checked frequently to see if it was open yet. Each time leaving the door open, letting in blasts of cold morning air. Finally we had had enough of getting up from our seats and closing that door that L said something to them. After that the door got shut.
And why did we have to shut that door? Because, for some reason, the ticket agent who sold us our tickets either lied to us, was clueless or just wanted to surprise us. We had window seats in the first two rows of the car.....on the right side! Which meant that the mountains, rivers and valleys would be on our side of the car for the 10 hour journey that stretched ahead of us!