Tuesday, 8:15:07a, Home! And a warm welcome from KG.
Safely home, this is the last post of our Burning Man adventure in this format, which is to say for new readers — it’s the top post of a pile of posts going back to the planning days in July.
“Dr. Breadhead Goes to Burning Man” is soon to be a motion picture!
Amtrak ticket stubs of my just completed trip.
You don’t get tickets to ride on an airplane anymore. KG and I flew to Seattle from San Diego, Saturday afternoon (2/11), on two pieces of paper we printed at home.
It is nice to be home. I missed my work station with its two screens, which makes editing this weblog so much easier than using the iPad and hotel business centers.
Job one was to put the entries into chronological order.
Since returning, I have edited the movies from Beale Street: the Wired! Band, whose participation triggered my trip, and who went on to win First Place in the group completion! Spoons and Abel and Pristine were two favorites from a random sampling of the quarter-final performances on February 1 and 2.
Follow this link to a video mix of the parade in New Orleans.
I have fleshed out the posts about the people I met through the community seating style of the Amtrak dinning cars; and, added google maps to clips of places captured in passing from the moving train.
Segment 6: on the Pacific Surfliner to San Diego now, Thursday, 2/9 at 10:10p.
And it’s dark outside, only my tired reflection in the window.
The Ghost Train
After the majority of coach passengers elected to continue the trip by buses provided by Amtrak, the few remaining were upgraded to empty rooms in the sleeper cars. By the time we were underway again on February 8, 2012, at 1p. we had some 27 passengers in two sleeper cars and the three empty coach cars pictured here.
The cars were located behind the lounge or observation car and when I discovered that the restroom in the lounge car was closed, I used the one in this car, the closest restroom to the observation car. That was a mistake. The car stewart cleaning the coach cars read me the riot act on how this area is off-limits! Suddenly, I am in the army? In my defense, and to avoid being sent to the Captain’s office, I reported that the restroom in the lounge is closed. ”You have several restrooms in the sleeping cars,” he said in a tone that his personal frustrations with the delay leaked out all over his clean coach cars.
Soon afterwards, it was announced that the cars are closed for cleaning and “off-limits.” From then on we referred to ourselves as being on the ”the ghost train!”
With Destiny on the Sunset Limited
Destiny was traveling with John (#2), who told her that his girlfriend is the ocean. I had no comment at the time, and still don’t.
That’s CJ standing in the background, our unfailingly up-beat dinning room manager.
John and John
John on the left is a retired Naval Commander on his way home in San Diego from a board meeting in New Orleans. John is serving as president of the Steamship Historical Society of America, and we ended up having dinner together at a resturant in the handsome Union Station (LA) while waiting for the 10:10p Surfliner to San Diego. I enjoyed learning about the society since the riverside town of Snohomish was settled thanks to the development of paddle wheel steamships in the Pacific Northwest. My luck riding the Sunset Limited changed when I discovered that John was taking a cab in my direction east of San Diego and offered to share the fare — thanks John!
John on the right is from Lafayette, Lousiana, and on his way in deguise to California beach fun. As I understand, one too many skate board injuries put an end to John’s professional career. John and his traveling buds were also going on to San Deigo, and I last saw John rolling down the concourse toward the tracks with he and his bags atop a skate board
Two hour wait at Maricopa, Arizona, Thursday, February 9, 2012
First the rumor was that we were waiting for new engineer and conductors … then it was announced on the intercom that we are waiting for the work crews ahead to clear the track. Since leaving San Antonio nearly 30 hours late on Wednesday, this train is no longer on the schedule and we should expect waiting for freight traffic. Here’s how the conductor put it over the intercom upon our first delay on Wednesday, soon after starting out:
“Going to be a lot of freight trains out here today folks, better get use to it!”
Can you imagine a pilot telling his passengers to “get use to” rough air?
On the other side of the coin, the station agent at Maricopa, Bob, was a gem of Amtrak lore based on his 35 years service. He remembered when the Superliners were first placed in service in 1978 — state of art train travel, but now are out of date, according to Bob. With the political picture for Amtrak funding grim, improvements are not on the horizon. And the cars are showing wear and lack of care … years of stains and crud in the corners.
Enough rail ranting — checkout Maricopal -