Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Eagles Over Klamath Lake

There are things you miss when you fly or drive - like the eagles soaring over Klamath Lake in the morning. That and the Coast Starlight has an arcade room.

BYOSB or Bring Your Own Sleeping Bag. Get a seat away from the doors if you can - they are noisy and foot traffic doesn't fall off until well after midnight. The arcade room was mostly empty but every now and then one of the machines would erupt with an advertisement for a video gaming system "available in 1995". At one point the arcade room was full of a group of people grooving to someone playing a guitar and another point it was a few people waiting for the next smoking stop.

The food varies and includes ramen noodles. You can also bring your own ramen noodles. The young couple ahead of me traveling with their infant was having ramen for dinner and breakfast. The breakfast ramen was delayed due to an unplanned engine change in Oakland. Someone gave me a couple of cans of beer for the trip. The floor of the downstairs become sticky at one point. The fog in southern Oregon was so thick that the afternoon sun was dimmed and it was hard to see even 20 feet from the train. An amputee with a metal leg struggled with the swaying train. One kid kept punching the door opening button for moving between cars. I overheard the conductors discuss seating arrangements and carry-bys or passengers that miss their stops. I saw a carry-by rushing off in Emeryville.

But the saccades of beauty make it all worthwhile.