January 03, 2009

By train

On the train

When you come through a town by train, you see backyards and stockyards and bridges covered with graffiti. It's like visiting family. Instead of walking in the front door like company and stepping into a living room where the pillows on the couch have been plumped or the dining room set with fine china, you sneak into the back door and step into the kitchen, where the counter is piled with dirty pots and pans, and the broom is leaning against the wall.

On my train ride today, I saw cranes and cement mixers and piles of dirty snow. I saw boarded-up sheds and broken swingsets and rusted old cars with bushes growing over the fenders. We passed towns where Christmas trees had been tossed onto curbs and marinas where boats were lined up in rows and shrink-wrapped for the winter. For miles and miles, the train followed Dead Explorer River, which was filled with chunks of floating ice that had melted and re-frozen into all kinds of fascinating shapes.

And now I've arrived in the Big City Like No Other, where I'll be staying for a few days with Red-haired Niece and then for a few days with Urban Sophisticate Sister. I've decided to begin my sabbatical with a little vacation to visit family and friends and some of the best museums in the world.


Busymomma66 said...

Oh Enjoy (she says with envy).

Such great museums and fun to be had.

Anonymous said...

I'd never thought of a train journey like that before - I'm looking forward to taking one now. Have a lovely time with your family.

Patti said...

You have fun, and don't worry about us! I love that train ride, but too bad it doesn't end at Grand Central Station anymore.

Rana said...

That's a great metaphor for the train pathways - I've always enjoyed them, and getting to see things you wouldn't otherwise see.