Taking the Train!

picture through a window of Puget sounds and a small wharf

View from Amtrak's Coast Starlighter, Washington

We got on the train in Seattle’s King St. Station: a quick ID check, and that was it.

No nude pictures.

No irradiation.

No groping.

This is how travel should be.

Of course, it’s not ideal. If we had flown, we’d have been in SF by lunchtime; instead, we’ll get there for breakfast the next day. The wifi connection on the train wasn’t working, so we couldn’t get as much work done as we had hoped. And since It takes almost 24 hours to get to San Francisco, so we had sprung for a “roomette” (a two-seat compartment that converted to two beds), which made it a lot more expensive than flying.

But it’s got plenty of upsides as well. It took us back to the days of traipsing around Europe with rail passes and overnighting in couchettes, although the seats and beds are a lot more comfortable than we remembered. There’s a lounge car, with games to play, and other passengers are friendly. And most importantly, we’re voting with our checkbook.

We usually fly a lot, and so we called our airline to let them know why we wouldn’t be taking any trips this holiday season — and to ask them to continue to lobby the TSA as well as our Senators and Congresspeople. The woman I talked to on the phone said they’ve gotten a lot of similar calls.

So it really feels like the right thing to do. And as far as protests go, it’s remarkably comfortable!

cross-posted on I Will Opt Out and Dreamwidth