Most Interesting Encounter(s) on a Train

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Law638

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While waiting in the Metropolitan lounge In DC, we encountered Rep. Jerry Nadler & John Heilemann waiting for their NYC train. we all had masks on, so I wasn’t sure until a fellow traveler told me who Nadler was. He was next to me & was sitting on my purse. He was very polite & said sorry!
 

pennyk

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Prior to an OTOL fest in July 2016, several of us were waiting in the lounge in WAS and General Colin Powell was sitting not to far from us. He appeared to be with his wife and when he got up to board his Acela he was greeted with cheers and requests to run for President from those in the lounge. I took a photo at a distance but opted not to post it.
 
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Dakota 400

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He appeared to be with his wife and when he got up to board his Acela his was greeted with cheers and requests to run for President from those in the lounge.
General Powell is an American to be appreciated for his service and to be pitied because of how he was duped to believe that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction that were untrue.

General Powell for President? I have read that his wife, Alma, squashed any thinking along those lines.

May General Powell rest in peace. He served his Country well.
 

Shortline

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Just curious, how did this turn out for you? Did you have to disembark?
No, of course not. I simply asked if they were ASKING to search, or if I was being told I HAD to let them search. Simply told them I was in the middle of lunch, was not interested in a discussion, and if they were asking, the answer was no. (this always has happened to me, at ABQ, where I usually order takeout or delivery to avoid the Flex meals for the past few years)

If they were REQUIRING it, I would have simply asked what was their reasonable suspicion, or other reason for the non-optional compliance.

They simply said thanks, and walked away, and I went back to my lunch. Oh sure, they tried the "well if you don't have anything to worry about, why not let us search" argument. I simply said I'm not having this discussion with you. Am I being asked to be searched, or am I being forced to consent to a search?

See, without reasonable suspicion, a warrant, or some other instance that would require compliance, or removal, they can only ask, if you consent. Nothing says you have to in most instances, they know that, and if they don't have that reasonable consent, warrant, or some other real good reason for requiring it, they will simply walk away. They count on passive intimidation. Which I find pretty abhorrent, personally.

The deal is, they know the law, much better than I (and most people) do, for sure, and they know there are only limited instances where they can require consent, or removal/detention. They simply like to ask, hoping for you to roll over and letting them search, even though they know there is no legal basis or requirement for you to do so. Most people don't know their rights, or are too meek to refuse, and they count on that. They count on sheep simply letting them do it. And, that's legal, for them to do. They can always ASK. And if you DO give consent, whether required or not, their search is legal. They can't always do it whithout consent. So, why give consent, when you don't need to, wasting your time, and letting them dig through your stuff.

There are several legal reviews on this, and generally, we do not have to consent to a random search without a warrant or probably cause. I'm not trying to be difficult, I sometimes let them dig through my dirty underwear to their hearts content, but when it's not convenient, I choose not to, as is my (and your) right.

If they persist, I would have consented under protest, required all relevant information, probably via video, and filed a grievance with their agency, and see where it goes from there. I'm not anti-police by any stretch......but rights, are rights. If you don't exercise them from time to time, you lose them.
 
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Nick Farr

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My fondest memory is my first transcontinental trip with my nine-month-old son from Michigan to Truckee, CA and back.

I have a lot of fond memories of meeting people in the dining car in the communal dining days. Nobody famous, but I got seated with lots of families trying something new, a lot of retirees, a screenwriter, a lady who lamented the migration of her friends as they got priced out of San Francisco.

My most notable other memory was meeting a French gentleman who, like myself, was on their way to Burning Man. Turns out we both had brought our bicycles on the train and were planning on riding up from Reno to Gerlach. They were in coach and I was in a sleeper, but we coordinated to meet for dinner every evening. I flew back, but we met up near Detroit right as they needed to cross the border so their tourist visa wouldn't run out.
 

anumberone

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My fondest memory is my first transcontinental trip with my nine-month-old son from Michigan to Truckee, CA and back.

I have a lot of fond memories of meeting people in the dining car in the communal dining days. Nobody famous, but I got seated with lots of families trying something new, a lot of retirees, a screenwriter, a lady who lamented the migration of her friends as they got priced out of San Francisco.

My most notable other memory was meeting a French gentleman who, like myself, was on their way to Burning Man. Turns out we both had brought our bicycles on the train and were planning on riding up from Reno to Gerlach. They were in coach and I was in a sleeper, but we coordinated to meet for dinner every evening. I flew back, but we met up near Detroit right as they needed to cross the border so their tourist visa wouldn't run out.
Interesting about the Burning Man convention, whatever it is. My first trip on the Starlight we were roomed across from two people, one was heading to the Burning Man and the other had Graduated from MIT and had other plans. We ate two meals with them and although I still don’t have a clear view of Burning Man I really enjoyed our conversations.
 

SarahZ

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KAL
I tend to stick to myself, which my car attendant noticed during my trip on the CZ. I was also pretty melancholy about an impending breakup, which may have been obvious as well. He checked in on me pretty frequently but never pushed me to talk.

While traveling through western Colorado, he noticed one of my library school textbooks. He asked if I was a librarian, and I told him I was working on my MLIS.

He stood in my doorway talking to me for at least 30 minutes.** We had similar tastes in authors, so I recommended some new ones, and he wrote out a list for me. He also informed me that there was a really nice bookstore at Denver Union Station and that I should check it out during the long stop.

When we got closer to Denver, he reminded me to check out the bookstore. (It really is a great bookstore.) When I returned to the train with my purchases, he asked what I bought. I showed him the books, and we talked about them for a little while. The next day, as I was reading one, he asked if I was enjoying it, and we talked a bit more.

I can be really shy, and I can't stand the usual small talk about jobs and such, so I valued my conversation with him. It was the highlight of the trip. It's rare that I connect with someone immediately. I tipped him more than my usual amount and sent feedback through the Amtrak site.

I wish I could remember his name. I hope he's doing well.

**Edit: I should note that our car was practically empty. There were two people in the room next to me and one person farther down the hall. He wasn't ignoring anyone or not performing his duties.
 
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