These true stories all happened in the past 30 hours.
- The first conductor waved out the window to her home and cats, and then proceeded to have a stuffed animal speak to a young child in a cartoon voice.
- In San Antonio on a 6 hour layover I walked to eat fatty brisket at a empty restaurant with a middle aged woman, a young mother and her genius son. I was schooled on Davy Crockett and the true story of the Alamo by her 4th grader.
- The basement cocktail lounge was dimly lit and sparsely filled on this late Wednesday night. But the bartender and waitress spun tails, we sampled a few of his favorite drinks. I learned that macho men won't drink out of girly glasses. I learned that Spurs watching is serious business. I learned that fancy ladies bathrooms are sometimes the perfect places to take phone calls. I took pictures of cocktail mixing with Maraschino cherry liquor in action for my blog.
- When I returned to the train the seats were flipped around the opposite direction on the train and two women had taken my seats, but denied it. I was sat next to the middle aged woman from dinner who did not want company in her row. She kicked, cursed and threatened me in her sleep.
- At one AM the pair of ladies began blasting a movie filled with every curse word imaginable while little children slept all around them. They didn't appear to believe in the headphone rule.
At 4 AM I wandered cars until I found a new home. (The best home, somehow a quiet car with good AC, low lighting and quiet people.)
- My breakfast companions were a retired middle aged man who wished he was a body spray painter living on an island, and who had visited 10 countries this past year. He picked up and flew to Barcelona for NYE because the plans to celebrate in his home town, Tucson, were less then exciting. My other dining companion, another resident traveler, picked up and moved to Tucson on a fluke, escaping the path of a nuclear plant.
- I answered 30+ emails, had 4 phone calls and did a heck ton of work even with a somewhat spotty wifi.
- A woman apparently tried to open the emergency window and was checked on by all three conductors.
- 60 elementary school kids got on for an hour and did as elementary school kids do. Kicked seats, opened and lowered tray tables and giggled mostly.
- A strange man decided to change his course from LA to Tucson to OKC. He also may have made up a story about a missing jacket, which he told cops about before he left.
- I ordered dinner from a restaurant connected to the Tucson station, and made it to get my food and back with only a few mins to spare because of an unexpected delay. This is a high risk move when it comes to train travel.