Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee


My flight from Portland was on time (and full), and there was an AirBART bus waiting for me after I claimed my luggage. An A's game was going on as I walked from the BART station over to the Amtrak station. I understand the game was in the 12th inning. Suddenly, there was a roar from the Coliseum -- a grand slam by the A's Mark Ellis to win the game. Fans began pouring over the bridge connecting the Coliseum to the Amtrak and BART stations.

I was expecting to wait about 40 minutes for my southbound train, but saw that there was another train for San Jose coming in less than five minutes -- the previous train had been badly delayed. Indeed, there was something of a train jam at Coliseum Amtrak, which has only one platform. A northbound (toward Sacramento) train, also badly delayed, pulled in. People pouring out of the ball game began frantically running down the long ramps, but the train pulled out without them. Having had the situation explained to me by the conductor, I called out to the disappointed fans, "Don't panic! There's another Sacramento train coming in fifteen minutes."

Waiting outside the station was my southbound train, which, once the northbound had cleared, came on in. It then headed south, only to stop again to wait for the next northbound to come off the single-track Niles line. It was only a minor delay, but I decided to take the opportunity to go back to the cafe car and get a small snack.

I commented favorably on the Cafe car attendant's coffee cup, which sported the old British Railway logo. He explained that he'd bought it at a rail museum in Scotland about a year ago. He couldn't remember exactly which one or where it was, though. I headed back to my seat, and as I was settling in, over the train PA cracked this announcement, "The museum was in Alford." I chuckled and said to the people in the car around me, "That's the first time I recall having an announcement tailored solely for me and me alone." I bet the rest of the passengers on the train were a little mystified.

After a fairly quick and uneventful (and free, as the conductor never came by and lifted my ticket) trip to Fremont-Centerville, I walked home towing my luggage, which was feeling heavier by the minute. I was pleased to find that I had indeed set the VCR correctly, and can therefore now watch the Formula One GP of Canada this evening, after which I think an early bedtime is indicated.
Tags: formula 1, trains, travel

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