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Old 01-30-2008, 12:55 PM   #21
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I'm afraid I'd go stir crazy. I can read and listen to music for awhile, but I don't know. What are the odds of striking up a conversation about momentum investing, or home-brewing beer with some stranger? DW won't want to discuss those topics for long

-ERD50
Just take a bottle of vodka and a bottle of Viagra. One or the other should keep you occupied.

Ha
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Old 01-30-2008, 01:44 PM   #22
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OK, Goonie said he enjoyed the cross-country train trip, Martha said she has done Chicago to LA - what did you think, Martha?

We have a wedding to attend near LA in June. Wife refuses to fly. You pay for a sleeper whether you occupy with one or two (second person just buys their travel ticket). So financially, it makes some sense for me to travel with her rather than fly.

I'm afraid I'd go stir crazy. I can read and listen to music for awhile, but I don't know. What are the odds of striking up a conversation about momentum investing, or home-brewing beer with some stranger? DW won't want to discuss those topics for long

-ERD50
On one of our train trips i ended up listening and singing Irish songs with Caroll O'Connor (Archie Bunker) down in a lounge car. pretty entertaining. That was some years ago... Wonder if you could strike up an incoherent conversation with Brittany? Trains go through prettier routes - they're in the older areas of towns, more scenic, and in the wilder parts of the country. Only done the west part of the country, East might be different.
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Old 01-30-2008, 02:24 PM   #23
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Over the holidays, I opted to take Amtrak from DC to Hartford, CT, to go to my sister's house.

Flights to Hartford or Boston were ridicously expensive when I started looking in October.

Amtrak took 7 hours to make trip, and R/T it was only $120! (Flights were about $400). The ride was kind of long, but I read a book and listened to my iPod and took a nap and ate dinner...it worked out OK.

Driving up and down the east coast is a nightmare to me, so I didn't want to do that.

I take Amtrak from DC to NY for work sometimes, and I love it. That's a great ride (on the Acela, when the company's paying).
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Old 01-30-2008, 03:09 PM   #24
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Newguy888, I misinterpreted your thread title to mean, "only 60+ hours on the train, thatís not nearly long enough." This looks like the Picasso thread, an acquired taste. To paraphrase a retirement motto: "The worst conversation on a train is better than the best on a plane."
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Old 01-30-2008, 03:14 PM   #25
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Just take a bottle of vodka and a bottle of Viagra. One or the other should keep you occupied.

Ha
And a portable DVD player with 'Risky Business' - 'she likes trains'....


-ERD50
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Old 01-30-2008, 04:39 PM   #26
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What are the odds of striking up a conversation about momentum investing, or home-brewing beer with some stranger?
I don't know about striking up conversations about those particular topics, but I've met some fascinating people in the diner and lounge cars, and had many interesting conversations while riding the rails. They also had a movie in the evening, and occasionally they'd hire someone (kind of like a 'step on' tour guide) to give talks about the history and/or geographical features of the areas we traveled through, in the lounge car.
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Old 01-30-2008, 04:59 PM   #27
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Goonie -what a nice perq. on a long trip. I think I would like a long-distance train ride. The seats are more comfortable, and it's easier to move about. I think the sleeper option would rule!

I'd love to do the equivalent for trans-Atlantic travel.. a ship rather than a plane.. but, as we've explored in another thread, ...that's tough. There's only the Queen Mary Southampton/Brooklyn these days.. only in certain seasons, and for mucho dinero, plus 'dressing for dinner' and so forth. Despite the existence/persistence of many major port cities, they in no way facilitate passenger sea travel.

Our next non-US extra-Italy vacation destination is Barcelona. Don't know when exactly it's in our future, but I know there's a high-speed sleeper train from Milan, and I'm looking forward to waking up in a new place!
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Old 01-30-2008, 05:00 PM   #28
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My husband and I went from Chicago to Dallas on Amtrak a couple of years ago. The trip was about 22 hours as I recall. He wanted to experience the train and I really couldn't understand why we weren't flying, but heh, I am always in for a new adventure. We had a sleeper car, one of those reeaallly small sleepers. I had the top bunk, he had the bottom bunk. I slept like a baby in my cozy little space while my husband was awake and listening to every noise and bump and checking his wristwatch the entire night. When I awoke after a good 8 hours sleep he announced that we would never travel by rail again. He was a nervous wreck and uncomfortable during the entire trip. I loved the lounge car and meeting everyone on board. I would do it again in a flash. I just need someone else to be my roommate!

Oh, and we arrived on time with all our luggage.
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Old 01-30-2008, 05:15 PM   #29
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Cruisinthru.. what made him nervous, do you think?

I love the idea in particular of arriving right in the city center. No extra $50+ taxi rides, and yeah.. it's harder to lose yr. luggage.
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Old 02-01-2008, 10:36 AM   #30
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OK, Goonie said he enjoyed the cross-country train trip, Martha said she has done Chicago to LA - what did you think, Martha?

We have a wedding to attend near LA in June. Wife refuses to fly. You pay for a sleeper whether you occupy with one or two (second person just buys their travel ticket). So financially, it makes some sense for me to travel with her rather than fly.

I'm afraid I'd go stir crazy. I can read and listen to music for awhile, but I don't know. What are the odds of striking up a conversation about momentum investing, or home-brewing beer with some stranger? DW won't want to discuss those topics for long

-ERD50
I like reading, staring out the window, and conversations at meal time. A number of years ago Greg had a long conversation with an Alberta rancher about oil sands investing. Once we sat down at a meal and he directly asked the couple across the table whether they voted for George Bush and what they thought of him. Another time he asked a different couple across from us whether they wanted to discuss religion or politics--their choice. Ack!



Lots of good, interesting conversations.
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Old 02-01-2008, 01:33 PM   #31
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Martha and others, thanks for the replies. I hadn't really been thinking about the lounge car, I was picturing spending all day in the same 4x6 room that you sleep in. This is sounding much better to me.

And if they do have some guides, that would be great. On our Alaska cruise they had that, a naturalist on board that gave a talk each day and pointed out things along the way. I wouldn't expect that level on a train of course, but even a little would be nice.

I can just picture my DW trying to hide if my conversation starter was 'Politics, Religion, or Milk, your choice!'.

-ERD50
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