We were the first people sitting in the dining car for breakfast this morning. The food (pancakes and strawberries) was great again. After breakfast we visited the observation car for a little while, but it was a pretty hazy sunrise so we decided to go back to our roomette to enjoy the scenery from there. Corbin’s photography classes are really paying off on this trip so far! We adjusted the shutter speed as high as our dlsr camera will allow. Right now it’s 3:48pm and I’m laying in the top bunk of our roomette downloading the pictures, and typing this etc. There are just too many great pictures to count! We are supposed to go down to the dining car at 5pm for dinner, but I can’t imagine eating another bite right now. We had some really good hamburgers for lunch. It seems like all we do is eat and sit!
We are having so much fun though. It’s indescribably relaxing to just sit and visit while the world rushes past the windows. Today’s highlights were Alpine Texas (Big Bend), and El Paso so far. At this point in our day, our next stop where we are allowed to detrain for a little while will be in Tucson. I’m hoping to find a geocache while we are there since I believe we will be able to get off of the train for an hour.
As we passed through west Texas, we were amazed by the changing geography. We spent quite a bit of time listening to the podcasts and trying to figure out which geological features we were seeing. As we rode along the border between Texas and Mexico, it was amazing to see the stark contrast of the appearance of the Mexico side in Juarez vs. the US side in El Paso. There were so many border patrol trucks! Looking down from the second story of the train we could actually see footprints in the sand where people just routinely walk across the border despite the patrols. I can’t even imagine what this area looks like at night with all of the activity we saw during the day!
One last thing… so far it seems that we have packed everything we need without overpacking. I’m glad I spent so much time reading all of the Amtrak forums for suggestions about what to bring on board. So far everything has been spot on! Time will tell if this feeling will hold up.
To check out Corbin’s perspective of today and yesterday, check out his blog.