Monday, October 31, 2011

Train trips and Zombie Hank Williams

I think I'd have a lot more interest in traveling around America if I could do it easily, quickly, and inexpensively on trains. Truthfully, I just really don't like driving. Maybe that's because I've never owned a car whose buttons all worked or whose doors all opened, or maybe it's just because I am a bad American. There is just something so fabulous and romantic about embarking on a train trip -- from the station, to the trolley service (which will forever remind me of Harry's first trip to Hogwarts), to watching the cows and castles whip past as you fly through the countryside. I just love trains.

Highlights of this working trip to Eaglescliffe, England:
- Traveling First Class on the way down. Somehow, the 1st Class Advance ticket was cheaper than coach, so there was no question. It involved free wifi, tea, sandwich, crisps, and a brownie. Also, a bit more legroom. Apparently I looked like a college student rather than a deserving 1st class traveler, however, because the trolley-woman was horribly rude and condescending. The rest of 1st Class was filled with retired couples on holiday. No screaming babies.
- A screaming baby behind me on my coach trip back to Edinburgh. I have slightly more pity for the mothers of screaming children, now that my friends are mothers. But shouting, "Jordan! Stop it! What is wrong with you?!" will not make your infant quiet.
- A huge man reading D&D 'zines in the seat next to my assigned coach seat on the return trip. When he started also picking his nose and biting his nails (loudly), I changed seats. (#snob)
- A great gig in Eaglescliffe, playing a solo set, then playing accordion and singing with The Lovesick Cowboys. They began as a Hank Williams Tribute band, but now, as they joke, they only sing half-Hank Williams songs. It was funny to hear their proper English accents, followed immediately by the "Lovesick Blues," but great people and great music made for a great evening. I love a band that is not afraid to invite an accordionist they've never met to join them onstage.

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