Music Across America

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Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
789
Thanks for your insight, Seaboard. On our trips this fall on western trains I had the same reaction. Crews more consistently seem to be trying to do a good job and have good attitudes. The same with my trip last week on the Palmetto. Maybe it’s the fear of being the target of the next job cuts. I like to think it’s because of better training and maybe hiring of new employees better suited for the job.

Agree with the deteriorating Superliner equipment (but Amfleet cars are improved). Food continues to be just ok, but glad you had a good chef on SWC. Also agree the BNSF generally runs a good railroad (thank you Mr.Buffet) and the route of the Chiefs was also good for us on two short SWC trips. The UP on the Sunset was a disaster (but we got to see New Orleans nightlife at 3am)!

By the way, I meant to say I enjoyed your photos too. Glad you brought a long lens. Afraid I have succumbed to the convenience of phone photos.
 
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Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,423
I have two lenses available to me an 18-55 and a 55-300. I really want to buy a wide angle lens but I haven’t made the purchase yet. I’m getting ready to replace the camera in the next eight months so I don’t know what I’m doing just yet.
 

JRR

OBS Chief
Joined
Jul 17, 2017
Messages
924
I have two lenses available to me an 18-55 and a 55-300. I really want to buy a wide angle lens but I haven’t made the purchase yet. I’m getting ready to replace the camera in the next eight months so I don’t know what I’m doing just yet.
I am not surprised that the Ricky Mountaineer has been frequently recommended to you. Based on our trip and what I have gleaned about you from reports etc., I think it would be a good fit for you. The only down side I can see is related to Canada ( living in Canada and being paid in Canadian money).
 

v v

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,260
Really enjoyed the first day, going to spread out reading the blog as there's a lot to take in.

What's the connection between Amtrak, CocaCola and a Polar bear?

Thanks for writing this up, you do have your own style that's fresh and interesting
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,423
I am not surprised that the Ricky Mountaineer has been frequently recommended to you. Based on our trip and what I have gleaned about you from reports etc., I think it would be a good fit for you. The only down side I can see is related to Canada ( living in Canada and being paid in Canadian money).
You know I could handle getting paid in Canadian money, and I would be ok with living in Canada. Especially western Canada. I have quite a few good friends in the Vancouver/Seattle area that I could really have a good life. And thank you. Of course my other qualification I’m fully bilingual with English and German. And I can read Spanish, French, and polish.

Really enjoyed the first day, going to spread out reading the blog as there's a lot to take in.

What's the connection between Amtrak, CocaCola and a Polar bear?

Thanks for writing this up, you do have your own style that's fresh and interesting
Your welcome. I’m glad you like my style because I always love your style. I really look forward to your reports. The connection with Coke is because Amtrak switched from Pepsi to Coke products. So they wrapped this engine to commentate it. Why Coke has a Polar Bear in a lot of ads I hope someone else he can tell you. As I actually don’t know.

Thanks again for all the kind words.
 

JRR

OBS Chief
Joined
Jul 17, 2017
Messages
924
You know I could handle getting paid in Canadian money, and I would be ok with living in Canada. Especially western Canada. I have quite a few good friends in the Vancouver/Seattle area that I could really have a good life. And thank you. Of course my other qualification I’m fully bilingual with English and German. And I can read Spanish, French, and polish.



Your welcome. I’m glad you like my style because I always love your style. I really look forward to your reports. The connection with Coke is because Amtrak switched from Pepsi to Coke products. So they wrapped this engine to commentate it. Why Coke has a Polar Bear in a lot of ads I hope someone else he can tell you. As I actually don’t know.

Thanks again for all the kind words.
Yes, the west coast of Canada is really a beautiful place. The exchange rate now is unfavorable. My sister lives In Brockville Ont and the healthcare situation there is tough as everything is in Ottawa or Kingston and with long waits for appointments etc, and her lack of mobility, it is a pretty tough situation for her.
 

v v

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,260
View attachment 16839
Missouri River Runner

View attachment 16840
The Molly Pitcher Ex Pennsylvania car

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A Union Pacific local at Kirkwood

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A train of many colors.

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A Chicago and Illinois Midland and amazing original zephyr.

View attachment 16844
A Milwaukee Road bi-polar

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Erie Lackawanna SD45

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Missouri Pacific Alco

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My favorite paint scheme.

View attachment 16848
Now that’s a steam engine.
Excuse my ignorance, but what is a Sam car?
 

v v

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,260
View attachment 16839
Missouri River Runner

View attachment 16840
The Molly Pitcher Ex Pennsylvania car

View attachment 16841
A Union Pacific local at Kirkwood

View attachment 16842
A train of many colors.

View attachment 16843
A Chicago and Illinois Midland and amazing original zephyr.

View attachment 16844
A Milwaukee Road bi-polar

View attachment 16845
Erie Lackawanna SD45

View attachment 16846
Missouri Pacific Alco

View attachment 16847
My favorite paint scheme.

View attachment 16848
Now that’s a steam engine.

Where did you see these please? and the Aero Train...
 

v v

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,260
Day 8: Southwest by Chief

I awoke in the bottom bunk of our roomette to see the formations of a beautiful sunrise so I quietly got dressed and went to the railfan window at the rear of the last coach to photograph the sunrise. Right around the official sunrise at 7 AM MT Malcolm woke up and we went to the diner. This morning we were sat with a trucker and his wife headed to Albuquerque to pick up a new rig.

We had interesting conversations with them mostly about where to find the best food across America and I have some places noted down after that. I had the pancakes and for the first time of the trip they were remarkable the chef made them the perfect consistency. During our stretch stop in La Junta I made a point to tell the chef that those were the best.

Of course on the stretch stop I visited the locomotives but also a mural advertising the Chief. These small towns love their trains and they make it known as well. There was also a bank made out of a former ATSF caboose I found cool. Malcolm and I talked to a music journalist from New York traveling to the Grammies in the lounge all the way to Raton. It was really interesting getting to hear his point of view on issues effecting America today.

Especially because his opinion differed from what I had expected so it was really rather eye opening actually. And all I can say is my party has a lot to work on if we want to truly be the party for the people. I also took the time to plug one of my friends who is an upstart in the music career. Raton Pass was a fairly quick part of the trip honestly. We had a fresh air stop in Raton and upon departure from there I rode in the Railfan Window because I wanted to photograph Semaphores.

I have to say the American southwest is a beautiful region with its plateaus, and many colors on display. We basically spent the whole time from Raton till our 12:00 PM lunch reservation back there shooting semaphores. Of course they are common in parts of Europe but so rare over here.

We were sat with two people who originated in New York off the Lake Shore and one bound for California, and one bound for the Grand Canyon by way of Flagstaff. We had a nice conversation about rail travel and music with the one bound for California but after he left in my opinion was the better conversation. Me and the one bound for the Canyon started talking about the “Yesterday” movie and we had a long twenty minute scholarly discussion about it while we ate dessert.

After lunch we went to the railfan window to photograph our meet at Glorieta with our eastbound counterpart. After that we settled in the lounge and I talked to a young African American woman wrestler who had one hell of a story. Malcolm went somewhere to do something but I talked the miles away with her. I learned she was in an abusive relationship with an ex military guy and she took her and her children to NY to get away from El Paso where he was.

Somehow she was charged with kidnapping her own kids, and the custody battle has apparently gotten out of control. Apparently her judge she has, also has a stated bias against many woman in the same situation. I wish her well and it definitely was a story that opened my eyes to how the American justice system fails some of our most vulnerable. If what she says is true it’s downright horrifying and I hope she can get a solution that keeps her, and her children safe.

She talked about being singled out by the police on a regular basis, and harassment from the leaders of the city so if that’s true it’s pretty disgraceful. I talked to her all the way into Albuquerque where I helped her get her bus ticket back to El Paso on the Amtrak connection bus.

During the fresh air stop Malcolm and I walked around downtown in the hour and twenty minute stop. Not much to see or do but fun nevertheless. After getting back on the train thinking we would be on time into LAX we called Alaska Airlines and made my reservations for BUR-PDX-SEA-ATL. However we were disconnected once so there were two reservations which caused me trouble when checking in. However we got my ticket paid for $180 for three flights isn’t bad.

Then we relaxed and watched the sunset as we sped along the Transcon. We had dinner again with our friend going to the Grand Canyon and a young person I fear is at risk of becoming or already is a white supremest. Malcolm and the other guy didn’t know how to deescalate the situation however I’ve dated enough psychology majors to have learned a thing or two. And I was able to calm him down and get him to bring his volume down considerably.

He only had a salad and luckily he didn’t last long. I left the table for the stretch stop in Gallup for a few moments and he was gone when I returned which was good enough for me. Both of them were impressed with how I deescalated the situation but you just have to know how to steer conversations and how to keep someone like that rom reacting poorly to something.

Both of them thought with my skills I should run for elected office which is something I am thinking greatly about. Already before meeting the earlier woman, and this guy. But even more so after, that and my friends in Georgia think I should. So what do you think could I run for office?

After that guy left it was a much nicer dinner. Afterwards we had a nice relaxing ride across the desert. Malcolm and I each had our headphones on and were sharing music between each other to listen. His music isn’t really my cup of tea but a lot of mine he actually likes though. We both went to bed fairly late as I was reflecting upon Woody Guthrie on the train racing across Arizona.
Fascinating.

Running for office, what do you think?
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,423
A Sam car is a car that belongs to the railroad I work for SAM Shortline. And the museum is the National Transportation Museum in Kirkwood, MO.

As to running for office I’m really on the fence still. Julia told me I would never actually do it so part of me wants to do it out of spite.
 

v v

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
1,260
A Sam car is a car that belongs to the railroad I work for SAM Shortline. And the museum is the National Transportation Museum in Kirkwood, MO.
Thanks for all that, the museum looks superb and we hope to be in St Louis in October so it's a must.


As to running for office I’m really on the fence still. Julia told me I would never actually do it so part of me wants to do it out of spite.
Smart girl...
 
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