It’s always better to start with the worst and move up to the best.
We did it the other way round with European trains.
The first was one of Spain’s fast trains which was clean, comfortable and on time. We changed in Madrid to another fast train which was of a similar standard (though I wouldn’t recommend the food).
In Barcelona we swapped to a slower train. The seats were still comfortable but not as good as those in the fast trains. It was about half an hour late but as we were in holiday mode that didn’t worry us.
Yesterday we left Montpellier on a French fast train which was better than the previous day’s slow one but not as comfortable as the Spainish one. We swapped in Avignon to a slower one, got in late to Nice where we only just had time to catch our connection to Ventimiglia and then found it had been cancelled.
The train we were supposed to catch had been leaving from platform E. When it was cancelled we were told to go to G – down the stairs we’d just lugged our cases up and up another set of stairs. We milled there with other confused travellers for about 10 minutes until someone who could understand French translated an annoucnement which told us we had to go to platform D – back down the stairs and up the ones we’d descended from platform E.
The train eventually turned up and left 20 minutes late. We had originally had 15 minutes to spare to get the connecting train and weren’t hopeful of making it but there were so many of us they’d held it back.
That was a good start and the seats were comfortable but the train was slow, it started off 20 mintues behind schedule and ended up 50 minutes late in Milan.
The only food on offer was very expensive junk (2.70 euros for a very small packet of dried fruit).
But the worst was the loo – clean enough but all it was just a seat with a pipe straight on to the track. Pity the poor people who live close to the railway.