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Guess who's coming to dinner?

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Twin Star Rocket

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Well, who have you met in an Amtrak dining car for any meal, not just dinner?

Off the top of my head I can think of these people with whom I've shared a table: Dutch student, Air Canada executive, Irish businessman, retired Amtrak engine supervisor, Oklahoma rancher, and a few retired teachers.
 

cpotisch

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Navy Seal deep sea diver, an old couple from New Zealand celebrating their wedding anniversary with a cross country train trip (on the CZ), a software developer from Honk Kong writing a book from the train, and so many more.
 

Railroad Bill

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A graduate student from Russia studying in Oregon, an Australian couple traveling across America by train, a Jesuit priest who lives in the woods of Montana to find peace, an Amish couple traveling from Kansas to Ohio for a wedding, a musical duo heading to Austin, Texas for a concert..playing in the lounge car for our entertainment later that evening, And so many more.. I will miss much of that on trains that have abandoned the traditional dining experience.
 

Bob Dylan

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John Madden of the NFL,TV,Commercials and Video Game Fame.

Many stories about this guy and Amtrak, some are even True!

And I have met lots of AUers for the first time all over the Country on various LD Trains including in the Lounge and Diner!
 
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Ziv

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John Madden got stranded in Glasgow MT when the Builder was waiting for track work to be finished. He bought a round for the house at the Mint Bar. There were only 9 or 10 guys there, plus 70 or 80 moose, elk, deer, two headed calves, but most of the latter weren't drinking. Just hanging out on the wall.

Madden seemed to like the place.
 

pennyk

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Recently I had the displeasure of sharing a table with a racist ignorant woman who would not shut up. Usually I enjoy interacting with my tablemates from all walks of life.
 

Palmland

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We seem to usually have interesting table mates: a Wal-Mart truck driver and wife on the CONO, a Seattle Tech executive showing his son the country on the SWC, a cariologist and wife on the Crescent going to a meeting, a single mom and children on the Sunset going to LA to start a new life, and a Amish couple going to LA on the SWC and then Mexico for medical treatment.

Perhaps Anderson should read this thread. People really do use LD trains for transportation. Who knew!
 
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cpotisch

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Recently I had the displeasure of sharing a table with a racist ignorant woman who would not shut up. Usually I enjoy interacting with my tablemates from all walks of life.
Fortunately I have never been seated with a racist loudmouth, but last year on the Meteor we noticed the guy in the table across from us had a t-shirt covered in swastikas. I pity the other people at that table...
 

BCL

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And I have met lots of AUers for the first time all over the Country on various LD Trains including in the Lounge and Diner!
As far as I know I've only met one. I was discussing a short trip (EMY-SJC on the CS) on the forum and someone figured out my identity. The whole discussion was about strollers and when I was there with my kid I he figured it out.

As for the main topic, I don't really have that much experience - maybe 3 trips where I used the dining car. However, I can remember each trip fairly well. The first time my kid and I were seated with a couple that were in sleepers and did a cross-country trip visiting family. Don't recall who it was the next time. On the CS (SEA-EMY) at lunch I was seated next to a young woman from New Zealand who was in the US for a summer solo trip. There were two solo guys across who were getting off at Portland. One said it was his first time on Amtrak, that he had delivered a vehicle to Seattle, and was taking the train to get back home. The next morning for breakfast it was a couple of older women across the table, and I don't recall who was seated next to me. However, I do remember that everyone at the table ordered the same basic egg breakfast and coffee.
 

gswager

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Portales, NM
I've met with a wife of an Arizona senator, Amish couple, a couple from Alaska with tall tale stories, Aussie couple, and bunch of unique Amtrak foamers which I know. I'm sure there are more ordinary people.
 
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the_traveler

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Whatever siding I'm sitting on!
Once on the Cardinal, I had 3 meals with another passenger. When the train was stopped due to a freight derailment up ahead, the person I was traveling with was talking to him. As I was passing by, he said that I may know him. He was another AU member! And more strange was the fact that we were both on the same EB for the prior 3 days!


I have also had dinner with a former Amtrak VP! (He was one of the good guys.) And of course many passengers from throughout the US and Canada, but also from England, France, Japan and Australia too.
 

BuffaloBoy

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My most memorable dining experience was with a Mennonite couple and their family surrounding us. A great conversation and they even came out to hang with me at the smoke stops (dirty smoker that I am)! They were just as curious about me as I was about them. That was a definite feel good trip.
 

RPC

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May 29, 2015
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We seem to usually have interesting table mates: a Wal-Mart truck driver and wife on the CONO, a Seattle Tech executive showing his son the country on the SWC, a cariologist and wife on the Crescent going to a meeting, a single mom and children on the Sunset going to LA to start a new life, and a Amish couple going to LA on the SWC and then Mexico for medical treatment.
I met your Amish couple on their way back from Mexico! Also Amtrak's entire car design department (on the Broadway limited back in the 80s), a trucker/Harley rider studying to be a nurse, a poet, and an Amtrak customer relations VP (also back in the 80s - he got the ground crew in ABQ to clean the "railfan window" on the SWC at my request!).
 

Skyline

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Recently I had the displeasure of sharing a table with a racist ignorant woman who would not shut up. Usually I enjoy interacting with my tablemates from all walks of life.
Fortunately I have never been seated with a racist loudmouth, but last year on the Meteor we noticed the guy in the table across from us had a t-shirt covered in swastikas. I pity the other people at that table...
The guy wearing a red MAGA hat two years ago wasn't much better. Loudish single issue dining companion for sure.
 

railiner

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Palm Beach County
John Madden of the NFL,TV,Commercials and Video Game Fame.

Many stories about this guy and Amtrak, some are even True!
John Madden got stranded in Glasgow MT when the Builder was waiting for track work to be finished. He bought a round for the house at the Mint Bar. There were only 9 or 10 guys there, plus 70 or 80 moose, elk, deer, two headed calves, but most of the latter weren't drinking. Just hanging out on the wall.

Madden seemed to like the place.
I had the pleasure of riding with John Madden three different times on the SFZ, but not in the diner, in the lounge car, where he 'held court', and entertained his fans. And I remember him taking his group across the street for a quick one, at a local bar during a service stop, to the delight of the locals.

I too enjoyed dining with stranger's for interesting conversation's in the many diner's across the system.

Sadly, I never got to dine with "Miss Eve Kendall" along the Hudson....
 

anumberone

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I've had lots of interesting conversation with folks in the dining cars and it is one of the enjoyable things about train travel. But, The couple of times I most remember is a woman traveling with another lady who was quite hard of hearing so she must have been in a habit of speaking loudly. She spent the whole meal talking about her ministry and never came up for air.The next meal she was seated in the next table and we were treated to The same story. I pretty well have it memorized by I'll spare y'all the misery.
 
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Shanghai

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Feb 4, 2008
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Florida
I had dinner with the exec assistant of Susan Rice on the LSL, we had lunch with a couple from New Zealand, a couple from Australia

and a couple from England. Also, in the lounge with George Will. I have seen several noted people in the Acela lounge at NYP - Bill

Cosby, Jill Biden, Harry Reid and former Defense Secretary (cannot remember his name) and their security guards.
 

Palmetto

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A pair of nuns, two brothers from way up north in Yellowknife, YT, a student from Holland, a mother and her son going from Chicago to Houston........
 

cpotisch

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Sep 2, 2017
Messages
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Brooklyn, NY
Recently I had the displeasure of sharing a table with a racist ignorant woman who would not shut up. Usually I enjoy interacting with my tablemates from all walks of life.
Fortunately I have never been seated with a racist loudmouth, but last year on the Meteor we noticed the guy in the table across from us had a t-shirt covered in swastikas. I pity the other people at that table...
The guy wearing a red MAGA hat two years ago wasn't much better. Loudish single issue dining companion for sure.
I've only been on I think seven LD trains since that "thing" announced his candidacy, but I've seen way way way too many MAGA hats onboard.
 

CCC1007

Conductor
Joined
Jan 2, 2015
Messages
1,719
Recently I had the displeasure of sharing a table with a racist ignorant woman who would not shut up. Usually I enjoy interacting with my tablemates from all walks of life.
Fortunately I have never been seated with a racist loudmouth, but last year on the Meteor we noticed the guy in the table across from us had a t-shirt covered in swastikas. I pity the other people at that table...
The guy wearing a red MAGA hat two years ago wasn't much better. Loudish single issue dining companion for sure.
I've only been on I think seven LD trains since that "thing" announced his candidacy, but I've seen way way way too many MAGA hats onboard.
Well, I wouldn’t suggest saying that in the rural parts of Montana...
A check of the county level voting should demonstrate the areas where I wouldn’t suggest expressing that opinion...
 
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