After another lie-in followed by a brisk walk, Josh and I got a lift down to the Listvyanka bus station from the hostel owner. Given the state of the roads it would probably have been quicker to walk, but it was a nice gesture. The bus itself was full of rather ‘interesting’ characters, who kept pointing at our beards and saying something about Kazakstan. When we tried to get off just before Irkutsk bus station they all tried to stop us, as they were no doubt concerned that in doing so we would surely loose our way. Sadly I did not have the Russian to communicate to them that the bus station was a couple of km out of our way, but repeating ‘okay, we are okay’ a few dozen times seemed to do the trick.
This evening we were due to get an overnight train to Krasnoyarsk, for the next leg of our journey. We also decided that it would be wise to buy tickets for Saturday’s mammoth 40+ hour trek to Yekaterinburg, as according to the Internet they were quickly selling out. This proved to be a little more difficult than hoped for, as the lady at window 2 (where we needed to go) was counting money and refused to serve us. We tried lady number 1, but she just took one look at my scrawled instructions and sent us off to the last at window 2, in the information centre. This lady was far more helpful, and via a series of rather fanciful mines we were able to ascertain that there were still seats for the journey, but that none of the bunks that we wanted were available. After this she gave us a new piece of paper and directed us back to the woman at window 2, who was still busy with her money. Thankfully the lady at window 3 was able to help us, and via a couple of diagrams and some more mining we were able to at least secure a couple of top bunks that were next to one another. A rather lengthy process, but at least we now have a way of getting out of Krasnoyarsk.