When I hear the train whistle, I want to hit the rails. I’m in love with traveling by train.
I hadn’t ridden on a train since fourth grade. But when Romantic Times held a convention in Chicago, I decided to save myself the 200-mile drive to the nearest airport and take the train.
It was the best decision I could make as it turned out. I got a “roomette” sleeper compartment and found it was the most civilized way to travel I could have imagined.
While not “roomy” – the space is 3-foot-six-inches by 6-foot-six inches – it comes with two reclining seats that make into a bed that is just over two feet wide with a bunk overhead. The space has well-planned small conveniences: a fold out table, a tiny closet, recessed hooks to hang things, electrical outlets for devices, climate control, individual reading lights, fresh towels and linens, soap and shower essentials.
The price also included meals in the dining car where you sit family-style, meeting other travelers. It also includes turndown bed services, coffee, juice, bottled water, ice and a newspaper each day. With luck, you get on in time for a wine and cheese party in the dining car.
When my husband and I were planning a recent trip, he suggested we take the train to Seattle and fly from there. We splurged and got the bedroom instead of the roomette. It was a six-foot by seven-foot-six inch room that included a couch and one seat along with a bunk that folded down – and its own bathroom.
It was such a relaxing way to travel across country. We met interesting people who had discovered train travel.
Along with watching the world going by, I found the train was a great place to write – there is no wi-fi on the train that passes through my town. I wrote more than 50 pages on the round-trip to Chicago. There was nothing to distract from the scenery or writing as we rumbled along.
I fell in love with riding the rails. Every time I hear the train whistle blow as the passenger line passes through my town I want to get onboard and take a ride.