So that was San Antonio, and a delightful 1 and a 1/2 days there. Early Friday am, we headed off to one of my new-found (not) secret pleasures: Amtrak! It cost $60 for the two of us together, and was much less expensive than renting a car. This was my second adult trip on Amtrak, and was from San Antonio to Fort Worth; seriously, you've got to consider it! Also, consider that if you travel with Doug (and then I'd ask you WHY?), he's going to search for the perfect seat. He's a little like Goldi-Locks, "too small, too big, wrong side, too far back, too far up, what about the sun, what direction are we going in?" and if you sit down with all your Stuff, you're just going to have to pick it up again and keep moving. Yeah. Easy for him to say. He's not carrying a purse, carry-on, headphones, plane-pillow, muffins and water and snacks. I've finally learned that it's best to just sit down once and say, "OK, figure out where you want to sit, and I'll follow you," and then watch all the amused other people watch him check out the seats. This works well in movie theaters as well. And ordering in restaurants? Like I said, he's got "radar" (or maybe more patience with forethought)for great food; just tell the server to come back Later. (Much Later.) And then order what he orders, but add chocolate. His radar works well in grocery check-out lines as well. I impulsively pick the nearest one, and think it's good enough. Then the person in front of me runs back for bat soup. And the clerk accidentally rings up 500 avocadoes and the manager has to come void out the sale. All this before the clerk lapses into a sneezing fit, and gets distracted by trying to remember the change he/she counted out.
But I got off track here. Back to Amtrak.
This first is a photo in the early morning hours of the Tower of the Americas, near the Amtrak station.
The Find-the-best-seats-the-best-lines-the-best-food Guy:
I just liked how dreamy and cute these kids looked, waving "goodbye" to someone on the train. . .
One thing about taking a train is that you see very different things than if you fly or drive. The train sometimes routes through areas of cities that are sadly dismal. Just outside of Austin, in the early morning light, I could see lots of sleeping bags and tents and piles of belongings set up along the train tracks. It really is a strong reminder to feel gratitude for the kinds of life most of us get to lead. I found myself wondering how many more hidden-away "tent cities", or similar tough living situations, there are throughout our country, just beyond plain sight. Apparently, even in large airports, a number of homeless people are finding shelter by skillfully blending into the backgrounds, choosing the times and spots among passengers, in the non-secured areas, these days. Sad.