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Politicking across the Midwest/ Build Back Better Express

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bms

Lead Service Attendant
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Jan 29, 2018
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263
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Cleveland
Great posts. It's so funny to me to think of the future President boarding a train at the Cleveland Amshack! I really missed seeing the fall color on #448 and #449 this year, so it was especially nice to see your gorgeous photo.
 

cnpeters

Train Attendant
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Oct 15, 2020
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39
Location
Akron, Ohio
This is nice. One minor quibble from an Ohioan, that’s not an oil pump, it’s a natural gas pump. Farmers lease drilling rights to natural gas companies on their land.
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
910
Location
Carolinas
Good job, as always, Seaboard. It’s always nice to get a good detailed report of what it’s really like to ride Amtrak in these strange times.

It seems that Amtrak may have figured out that hiring someone like Leo who had a good track record in customer service with the airline improves the chances they will be a good employee. That was certainly our experience on A-T with a former Marriott employee as SCA.

Does the Palmetto still have its BC car? I assume since you were in coach it was because with reduced ridership there really is no reason to pay for the upgrade since coach wouldn’t be crowded.

I agree about taking the back roads; but after a long trip think I’d be tempted to hop on I-20. And once again there is no way I could have kept up with your fast pace on the trip!
 
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hlcteacher

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Feb 17, 2020
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94
Location
cleveland
just beyond the station over the tracks, below the convention center is a mini farm, yes with chickens, pigs, goats, bees...
 

Dakota 400

Conductor
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
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2,452
I think it was a poor route choice because they missed the populations they needed to hit like Youngstown.
Thanks for a very interesting report! It's a good read. Your photos are always excellent as well.

I agree with your comment about missing Youngstown. I am surprised at the vote totals in that County.
 

Willbridge

OBS Chief
AU Supporter
Joined
Mar 30, 2019
Messages
638
Location
Denver
Day 3: The Lake Shore Limited
--------------------
I tend to visit with Brian once a year and I wish I had more time with him. He’s just one of those people who can always bring a smile to ones face. Even on this visit with such a tragic undertone in the coming days still his normal cheery self. After a long chat we eventually went to our hotel that is literally built above North Station. A very cool room very European. The bed literally took up half the space.
One of the bonuses of long-distance rail travel is being able to visit old friends and colleagues along the way. Much easier to do than adding to trips through airport security. Harder to do with tri-weekly, of course.
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
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Dec 31, 2014
Messages
3,879
Location
South Carolina
Leo is the Best SCA in Amtrak!!!
My first time bumping into him and he is absolutely amazing. I can't say enough nice things about him. Personally I would put him in charge of all OBS because he is just that good. He meets my high seal of approval.

Great posts. It's so funny to me to think of the future President boarding a train at the Cleveland Amshack! I really missed seeing the fall color on #448 and #449 this year, so it was especially nice to see your gorgeous photo.
They actually tried to make the Cleveland station look really nice with patriotic embellishes around the pillars. They tried but no amount of work can make it nice. Razing the building and building something similar to Sandusky Station in aesthetics would be nicer.


just beyond the station over the tracks, below the convention center is a mini farm, yes with chickens, pigs, goats, bees...
Wow that's hard to believe. But I believe it.

Thanks for a very interesting report! It's a good read. Your photos are always excellent as well.

I agree with your comment about missing Youngstown. I am surprised at the vote totals in that County.
I really think they should have gone Cleveland-Ashtabula on the Water Level Route then jumped on the CN down to Youngstown, and the P&LE into Pittsburgh. It would have been a far better route. And far easier to chase for your intrepid photographer.

One of the bonuses of long-distance rail travel is being able to visit old friends and colleagues along the way. Much easier to do than adding to trips through airport security. Harder to do with tri-weekly, of course.
There is nothing better than traveling by train and visiting every colleague along the way. And the random people you meet along the way I think is equally a good selling point. I love wandering the train talking to people. I really miss the sightseer lounge on the Capitol Limited for this reason.

This is nice. One minor quibble from an Ohioan, that’s not an oil pump, it’s a natural gas pump. Farmers lease drilling rights to natural gas companies on their land.
Thank you for that actually I had no idea. I just know it makes one heck of a great picture that I'm really happy with.
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
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Dec 31, 2014
Messages
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South Carolina
Leo was our SCA on a SIlver Meteor trip back in 2015. He was great. I'm glad to see that he's still on the job, given all the furloughs.
He was furloughed in the last round of furloughs at the start of October. It is a real shame we let the good talent go like that. He is the best. I've seen many a good review of him before on here. But my first time running into him. I would plan my trips around him to be honest.
 

Dakota 400

Conductor
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Mar 5, 2014
Messages
2,452
I really think they should have gone Cleveland-Ashtabula on the Water Level Route then jumped on the CN down to Youngstown, and the P&LE into Pittsburgh. It would have been a far better route. And far easier to chase for your intrepid photographer.
A possible reason the Biden campaign chose to not include Youngstown was recent Presidential election results. The Dayton Daily News published maps of the results of Presidential elections going back to 1976 (Carter vs. Ford) in Sunday's paper. It's interesting to see how that County (and region of my State) has changed. Our Lt. Governor said in an interview that when he entered politics years ago, it was laughable to think that Mahoning County (Youngstown) would become Red. The Northeastern part of Ohio were reliable Blue counties for years. Surely aren't now!
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
910
Location
Carolinas
As Seaboard said, there are some outstanding Amtrak employees like Leo. That prompted me to reach out to our memorable SCA on A-T to see if the recent changes have affected him. Here’s his response. This is what good customer service is all about.

“Good afternoon-evening, Mr. And Mrs.—, Pleasure to hear from you. Hope all is well. I'm currently heading north approaching Jacksonville hear on the auto-train. It would be a pleasure to have you as my guest. Thanks for keeping in touch. Let me know when you are traveling again with us. “
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
21,272
Location
Austin Texas
As Seaboard said, there are some outstanding Amtrak employees like Leo. That prompted me to reach out to our memorable SCA on A-T to see if the recent changes have affected him. Here’s his response. This is what good customer service is all about.

“Good afternoon-evening, Mr. And Mrs.—, Pleasure to hear from you. Hope all is well. I'm currently heading north approaching Jacksonville hear on the auto-train. It would be a pleasure to have you as my guest. Thanks for keeping in touch. Let me know when you are traveling again with us. “
One of our Members ( OBS)is a Retired Auto Train OBS Employee that fits into the Exceptional Catagory!

Theres lots of them on every Route!
 

pennyk

Conductor
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Leo was our SCA on a SIlver Meteor trip back in 2015. He was great. I'm glad to see that he's still on the job, given all the furloughs.
Leo is my favorite. I have traveled with him more times than I can count. He has received many awards from Amtrak, including an Amtrak Customer Advisory Committee (ACAC) Customer Service Award about 5 years ago that I had the privilege of presenting to him. :)
 

Seaboard92

Conductor
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Dec 31, 2014
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South Carolina
Shortly after reading this thread, I read my copy of the new (December 2020) issue of Trains magazine, and something looked familiar...

Oh I need to go out and buy that now. Believe it or not I'm not a subscriber to Trains Magazine. I do remember selling them the photo, but I had no idea what issue it would be in. So I will have to go out and get that one.

There are a lot of shining stars in Amtrak but I don't think I'll ever forget Leo as that service was that good. I will make a point once the furloughs are gone to always try and ride his run. There are a few others I also try and time myself around as well.

We shall see if I get another photo in Trains Magazine in January. I try and get at least two or three photos per year in the publication. I am also working on an article as well for the magazine. But I'm waiting for the Covid Situation to get under control so I can leave the country to do some research on the subject material.

Leo is my favorite. I have traveled with him more times than I can count. He has received many awards from Amtrak, including an Amtrak Customer Advisory Committee (ACAC) Customer Service Award about 5 years ago that I had the privilege of presenting to him. :)
And he deserves every award Amtrak has and then someone needs to make up some more awards and give them to him.

A possible reason the Biden campaign chose to not include Youngstown was recent Presidential election results. The Dayton Daily News published maps of the results of Presidential elections going back to 1976 (Carter vs. Ford) in Sunday's paper. It's interesting to see how that County (and region of my State) has changed. Our Lt. Governor said in an interview that when he entered politics years ago, it was laughable to think that Mahoning County (Youngstown) would become Red. The Northeastern part of Ohio were reliable Blue counties for years. Surely aren't now!
The political science major in me really wants to see that map. I would love to see them if you have them.
 

OBS

Conductor
AU Supporter
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Nov 9, 2011
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1,620
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Long Island, NY
One of our Members ( OBS)is a Retired Auto Train OBS Employee that fits into the Exceptional Catagory!

Theres lots of them on every Route!
Actually I worked on AT for a couple years but retired from NEC...another member on here also named Tom is the Auto Train veteran and retiree who fits your description perfectly!
 

Bob Dylan

Conductor
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
21,272
Location
Austin Texas
Actually I worked on AT for a couple years but retired from NEC...another member on here also named Tom is the Auto Train veteran and retiree who fits your description perfectly!
Thanks for the correction, and thanks for your Service also! I dont have the pleasure of knowing you, but do know Tom.
 
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Dakota 400

Conductor
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
2,452
The political science major in me really wants to see that map. I would love to see them if you have them.
Read this just a bit too late. I cut it out of the paper and sent it to my Nephew. I would imagine that the page could still be accessed in the archives of the Dayton Daily News. It was in the A section of the paper.
 

cnpeters

Train Attendant
Joined
Oct 15, 2020
Messages
39
Location
Akron, Ohio
Read this just a bit too late. I cut it out of the paper and sent it to my Nephew. I would imagine that the page could still be accessed in the archives of the Dayton Daily News. It was in the A section of the paper.
This was in the Cleveland Plain Dealer too.


And here's Youngstown (Mahoning County) from 60-2016
Code:
1960    Mahoning    D    38.7%    61.3%    Details
1964    Mahoning    D    27.1%    72.9%    Details
1968    Mahoning    D    34.8%    55.4%    Details
1972    Mahoning    R    49.7%    48.4%    Details
1976    Mahoning    D    37.0%    60.5%    Details
1980    Mahoning    D    40.1%    50.9%    Details
1984    Mahoning    D    40.6%    58.2%    Details
1988    Mahoning    D    36.4%    62.9%    Details
1992    Mahoning    D    24.8%    51.5%    Details
1996    Mahoning    D    26.6%    61.5%    Details
2000    Mahoning    D    35.5%    60.6%    Details
2004    Mahoning    D    36.7%    62.6%    Details
2008    Mahoning    D    35.6%    62.2%    Details
2012    Mahoning    D    35.2%    63.5%    Details
2016    Mahoning    D    46.6%    49.9%    Details
 
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