A look back on the journey … Part 10

13226c84475c447074827e181a4f6d0eHope you’re having a cool weekend !! It’s 81° degrees today with high humidity making it feel hotter than 81° which made me feel like I was back in Portland, Oregon. As I start to get settle back into my old routines and daily life after having returned from Portland on July 21st and then taking almost another week off to spend time with my husband to celebrate our 16th relationship Anniversary a little early.

Although the trip to Portland, Oregon was for business my husband and I also took it as a vacation/anniversary trip since our anniversaries are so close together. August 5th, 1999 is when I first met my prince charming and on September 10, 2011 is when I became the queen of his domain as his wife. Many people don’t celebrate two(2) anniversaries but I think it’s important to still celebrate and mark the day you first met just as much as the day you got married.

Anyways I was browsing through the many photos I took from our trip to Portland, Oregon. If you recall my previous posts we went there by Amtrak train. So let me tell you about our experience being on an Amtrak train for the 30+ hrs. it took to get to Portland from Los Angeles. It wasn’t really what I had expected and was a bit of a let down mainly due to the fact that the riding car we were seated in was outdated so a lot of things weren’t new.

One of the things that was a bit uncomfortable for me was that the AC wasn’t working by the windows but only in the aisle so if you sat by the windows you did not feel any air and summer heat + a metal train you feel like a canned sardine being steamed or boiled. The AC unit often had to be adjusted by the train conductor so that we all didn’t melt into our seats. Being disabled I was in the lower seating area in the car mainly for disabled riders.

Another thing I was told was there would be WiFi and I said a 30+ hr. ride should be so bad as long as I have WiFi to play some games, watch some YouTube, etc. Well, sadly the train I got on did not have WiFi. I spent most of it just taking pictures of the scenery that we chugged on through. I’m not complaining since the scenery was quite beautiful and we trekked through every landscape imaginable from the coastal beaches, rugged mountains, dense forests, farmer plantations fields, desert plateau, urban city, rural city, etc.

Our train had some emergency maintenance repairs that tacked on a 3 hr. delay. So at that point was a bit bummed that the train had no working AC on the window sides, no WiFi, and what was suppose to be a 29 hr. ride became a 33 hr. ride. It takes 16 hrs. by car and 2 hrs. by plane so why does it take 33 hrs. by train ? I had chosen and paid the extra money for the non-stop Amtrak tickets but it was not non-stop. It stopped at every city point in between Los Angeles to Portland.

Now if you’re wondering about meals on the train … BRING YOUR OWN FOOD !! If you’re a coach guest you have to pay for your own meals. Unlike airlines that provide meals with your flight unless you are in a sleeper car which is the one that has beds and private restrooms included meals are out of your pocket cost for coach riders. They aren’t cheap either ! Although they are good … they aren’t cheap. My 1st meal I had was the Angus Cheeseburger with came with lettuce, tomato, red onions, and kettle potato chips *Drink not included* was about $15 dollars ! Tack on a can of pepsi and it reached to about $16 for the Burger and Soda !!

If you’re a fast food person like myself $16 dollars is like two(2) burger combos with refillable drink not a can. $16 you can probably grill and make your own burger at home with plenty to share with friends. But that’s if the train conductor even get’s to you to take your order. Often times they’d announce that they’re going to be coming down to the coach seating to take orders for the Lunch menu or Dinner menu but they never came through our area. One person who did complained how many cars she had to walk passed before she got to us and it was tiring. (¬_¬) You’re lazy so you’re not gonna bother to walk to the last car and check on the people there ? Very thoughtful of you !

Overall it was a great experience riding the Amtrak train since it was the 1st time for both me and my husband to ride the train and our 1st time ever going outside of California other than Las Vegas, Nevada which to many Californians doesn’t feel like out of state but more like out of city since we go there many times. But next year if our business holds an event again in Portland, Oregon we’ll either go by car or we’ll take Amtrak again but go by Sleeper car so we have the beds to sleep in and private restroom. (∩ε∩) I enrolled in the mobile hotspot service with my cell phone provider so no WiFi is no problem now. (¬⌂¬”) Except for the issue of having no cell phone signal in some areas like the mountain and vast empty nowheresville.

I’d definitely travel Amtrak again and my husband and I added to our bucket list to ride to Amtrak all the way up the coast into Seattle, Washington then travel into Canada. (ⁿ⌂ⁿ) A cruise to Alaska is also on our travel bucket list. I have a very special friend that lives in Alaska that I would die to go visit as I haven’t seen her in ages.

But hopefully through this business my husband and I will be financially free to travel the world and explore all the places mother Earth has to show us. One of my goals is to visit all 50 states before I’m 50. I’m currently 33 so I have 20 something years to visit all 50 states and so far I’ve got three(3) already down – California, Nevada, and Oregon. Even though I didn’t fully go to the sight seeing spots of those three(3) states just being in them counts, right ? So I got 47 states to go !! I think it can be done.

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