Unemployment Diaries: California Edition Part II

I’ve been caught up with applying to jobs out on the west coast, so I find it harder to sit down after hours of screen time to blog about it. But let me catch you up. 


Three hours into my first long distance train ride and I have no complaints. I’ve never rode an Amtrak train before. I’ve traveled by subway, trolleys, inner city trams, and traveled back in time with gold thieves who would hold up a vintage locomotive in order to find gold in the passenger’s pockets. The stairwell leading to the bottom car does smell like urine, but my fellow passengers don’t reek of it, yet.

The Golden Eagle Amtrak train route.
The Golden Eagle Amtrak train route.

To say I was nervous about my 5-hour layover in San Antonio would be putting it lightly. I’m supposed to sleep in this thing? To be fair, the seats did recline far enough to snuggle in for an awkward night’s sleep and the leg room was generous.

But I’m one of those strange people who has an unhealthy relationship with their bed. I can’t sleep anywhere unless it’s between my own sheets. When I would do sleepovers at a friend’s house, my mom had to warn the parents I would have to call them before I’d go to bed. I would get home sick and just want to go back to my own house, each time. My mom expected the call and would tell me she’d be there before sunrise if I didn’t have a good time. I guess I wanted reassurance my home would still be there for me the next day, who knows.

Me, reluctantly sitting in my seat.
Me, reluctantly sitting in my seat.

A hour into the train ride I got a dose of what my fellow travelers did outside of the speeding bullet. The man behind me spent a majority of the first leg of the train on his phone. His daughter’s car had overheated, she was stranded in a neighborhood, and he talked her through what she needed to do in order for the car to start and return home.

The man in front of me might be Mr. Bean. He fell asleep within seconds and passengers two cars ahead of us could hear him snoring. I kid you not. I have never heard the most such a disgusting snore come from ones throat, at times people were nervous he was going to choke. I immediately made a mental note to never complain about the light snoring my husband did.

A group of people in the far back talked mostly about sports, but oddly enough politics would swoop into the conversation every once in a while. The loud obnoxious one with smiley tattooed on his neck favored the 49-ers. An older couple sported Dallas Cowboy gear and complained about Tony Romo.

I’ve been through two cities thus far according to the map, but anywhere else in the country I think they’d just be considered a gathering of people who couldn’t ravel far enough inland. We went through the town Crawford, and no joke, I blinked and missed it entirely.

The Brazen River
The Brazen River

I had my first river crossing – the Brazen River which means the Arms of God. I was happy to reach the other side because of the nightmares I had the night before of derailing on a bridge, drowning to death. I’m not crazy, my mother had me tested – in my Sheldon Cooper voice. 

Flat land for days
Flat land for days

The scenery switches up between flat land, bushes texans call trees and run-down homes. And there were plenty of old cars sitting in some backyards, a gold mine for my car-crazed husband and father-in-law.

City of Crawford
City of Crawford

I’m not to keen on getting up and out of my seat, yet. I’m still trying to wrap my head around what is going on around me. I like to absorb the culture before I start to wander the train. Can I leave my stuff on my seat? Which way is the cafe car? Should I sit quietly or make a friend?

I think I’ll wait a couple more hours before I indulge myself of what I’ll call home for the next 35 hours.

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Shannon Randol

Sharing life and what's helped me grow through what I've gone through.

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