Taking the sleeper train was ideal! The compartment was very nice (pics below) and it is great to be able to combine lodging and transport costs all into one fare. I went to sleep somewhere outside of Amsterdam and awoke as we were nearing Prague. I actually got up and got off for a few minutes when the train stopped in Berlin at 4:30am, but couldn't really see anything. I had a compartment-mate who was German and she was getting off there. She didn't speak much English and I speak no German, but she seemed very nice from the little bit we could communicate.
While traveling on the train is great, you do have to be careful to stay in the correct part of the train. When I arrived at the platform to board, I was a little thrown to see that the sign said it was going to Warsaw. The conductor told me to get on near the end of the very, very long train. After walking all the way to the end and thinking I was lost, I realized that the signs on the car doors at the back of the train said "Amsterdam to Praha." During the night, the train splits...part of it going to Warsaw and part of it on to Prague. Get in the wrong car and you may wake up in a different country than you had planned!
I am very tired, but plan to shower, dress, and head into town for a few hours anyway. I will try to post some pics tonight from Prague. In the meantime, here are a few of the train and my apt here in Hostivar.
This is my sleeper cabin on the train. Small, but oh-so-much-better than a plane.
Just across from the bunk is this cabinet that opens to reveal a small sink, mirror, towels, and cups of mouth rinse. The toilet and shower were around the corner from my cabin and shared by the whole car. Still, there was never a wait to go to the bathroom.
This is a sign at the train platform. While signs tend to have some English translations, I usually look for universal symbols which can be understood by all. In this case, I assumed the arrows all pointing inward was a symbol for the center of the station where everything I needed (a map, an ATM, a soda, tourist info, and a tram pass) could be found. I was right!
This is my apt in Hostivar, Prague. It is an attic apartment and filled with beautiful skylights (5 in the main room and 2 in the bedroom).
This is the little kitchen in the main room.
And here is the Lori-sized doorway into my very bright bedroom. I can stand upright and my head touches the top of the doorway on the right (in the photo). While the ceilings are perfect for me, someone taller would have a narrow path inside here.