Friday, July 30, 2010

Honeymoon Day Five: Travel up the Coast

We started off the day with breakfast at our normal spot. It was my last time eating the strawberry pancakes, so I made the most of it. We then went back to the room to regroup and pack up our stuff. At 11:30, we went to check out of the Motel 6, a process which should have taken a second but some how took twenty minutes due to incompetence. Finally we were able to catch the shuttle to the Amtrak station, and made it just in time to catch our 12:48 trip on the Coastal Starlight train.

Once aboard, Seth went to get us some lunch - a garden Burger for me, and a cheeseburger for Seth. During our trip, we were wedged between the ocean on our left and the mountains on our right; the view was amazing!

We passed through mostly farm country and the back of beyond. There was an air force base that we also passed which looked like it used to launch satellites into orbit, probably during the Cold War. There was a Titan II launch pad. The whole thing was rather abandoned and a bit creepy with an X-Files feel. Apart from that it was mostly lovely views of farm land or nothing in the mountains after we turned inland about two hours into our trip.

We had dinner the dining car and met a lovely couple, Jewels and Alan, both resident of Arizona and formerly of England, Jewels being English. They were delighted to talk with some like minded Democrats from New England and were wonderful dinner companions.

We also spent some time in the Sightseers lounge. This area has huge floor to ceiling windows which allow you to get the gets views. We talked with a local who told us a bit about what we were passing. There were also some volunteers called rail guides who were indicating some of the highlights to the people seated in the lounge.

The train arrived, blessedly, on time in Oakland and we took a cab the short ride to our hotel, the Washington Inn. The hotel is a very cool historical building that, I believe, is Victorian. When we arrived there was an awesome anniversary party in the main room with Indian music blaring. I was dancing as we checked in. Then it was off to bed before crossing the bridge to San Francisco in the morning.

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