The first express train from Munich to Hamburg leaves at 4:13 am. It could be called the “Homeless Express.” At least until Augsburg. Weather in Munich: Mix of rain and snow. April shows what she can do.

Nobody wants to be homeless at this time of the morning. However, in the Bavarian capital there are about 10,000 people, according to the ruling SPD group. The vast majority, the SPD wrote in winter, when it was very cold, were housed in city accommodation centers or in emergency shelters. But not all of them. Therefore, for a handful of them it is good that at this time the railway has made the earliest night train available as an exception.

Homeless people in ICE

The white ICE is there and extends far beyond the hallway. The longest platform at Munich Central Station measures more than 500 metres, enough to accommodate many carriages, all of which are heated and whose doors can be opened at the touch of a button. A small number of people who don't have a roof over their heads realized this that night and made themselves as comfortable as possible in the seats, but especially between the seats, where the luggage would normally be.

It's hot, there's a rug on the floor. The interior lights come on shortly before departure, but how disturbing that is for an abused body and, sometimes, for a confused mind.

In the third car from the front, an older woman is curled up in the fetal position. She has stacked her luggage, a suitcase on wheels, two cloth bags and as many plastic bags behind her back, facing the hallway, so that she looks like a cart fort. She can barely be seen behind her coat. Snuggled together. The driver comes and does the routine: “Good morning, tickets please.” The woman does not have one.

But suddenly she is wide awake. She lost all her money and all her papers. Or they were stolen. She has to go to Berlin, to the Alexanderplatz police station. The sergeant meets her there. He could help, he could confirm everything.

“No, that's not a method.”

The driver sighs and picks up her cell phone. I ask her if this is her first case this morning. She shakes her head at the cars ahead. I take it as a sign that more destinations like this are happening in the future.

When I later officially asked the federal police, they were investigating. “No, that is not a method,” says a spokesperson. No, they would have to be isolated cases.

That night I counted at least five unlucky bums at ICE, but maybe I was wrong. Behind the cart castle, loud snoring can be heard behind the crouching woman. My train passes tonight via Augsburg, it is the first stop towards Munich.

Federal Police Take Homeless People Outside

Two extremely robust federal police officers enter, dressed in blue uniforms. Their tone leaves no room for misunderstanding: “Good morning, the journey ends here for you,” they say.

The woman wakes up surprisingly quickly, as if she knew what was coming. One of her grabs her right arm, half helping her, half controlling her. The other picks up her luggage, everything takes no more than a minute, then the three leave the ICE.

The whistle blows and with it begins this hum that indicates that the long train begins to move again. Munich-Augsburg takes half an hour by ICE.

Half an hour of warmth, comfort and security hidden behind all the belongings that can be dragged around. Did the woman enjoy it? In any case, he took the railway's current slogan: “More railways for all” very seriously. Did she bother me? No, not really.

A family of four settled in Ulm. It wasn't half past five yet. The day had begun.

The article “How my ICE in Munich suddenly becomes a homeless express” comes from Business Punk.

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