Attempt 1 – credit card plus ticket vending machine. Credit cards not accepted.
Attempt 2 – get cash from station ATM then use vending machine. Unsuccessful, the ATM dispenses only 50 euro notes and the ticket machine doesn’t accept 50 euro notes.
Attempt 3 – go to counter and ask to buy from idly sitting DB service agent. No can do, this particular counter is for information only.
Attempt 4 – get in line at other counter, wait to purchase by cash from grumpy guy. Success. A boiling mad cartoonist barely made it to the train on time.
I remember a recent trip to Karlsruhe where I met the German equivalent of Basil Fawlty working for DB!