Posted: May 7, 2013 in Memories, Musings, Personal, Photos
Tags: , , , , , ,

A scimitar moon hangs in the blue-black sky as I drive home. A train passes silently along the tracks, silently because I’m cocooned in the van. Lights shine from inside the cars, warming the night, and although it’s merely a commuter train, it plucks memories from my heart, memories of trips to visit my grandparents in California.

We boarded the San Francisco Zepher in Omaha from a lovely old station that probably no longer exists or, if it does, exists as something completely different. I have no recollection of how we got to the station or much of any of the trips, just glimpses of things remembered and things gleaned from stories my parents told as we talked about the trips later. Both were just as real. They remember air conditioning going out, food running low. I recall magic, sleeping in our seats, going up into the dome cars and looking out, the country flying by and changing constantly, feeling as though we were outside. I seem to remember being there as the cars were washed, which may or may not have happened. Everything was different from the normalcy of home. Anything seemed possible.

Even now, in the days of Amtrak and tales of woe, the sight of a train moving through the dark at night, the silent, speeding cars windows into other lives, the magic still wells up in me and tugs at my heart, urging me to travel.


  1. annesquared says:

    Love train travel – 🙂

  2. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Janet,

    You had me at ‘scimitar’. Brilliant.

    Travel safe, arrive rested.



    • Thanks for stopping by, Doug. I’m looking forward to a week of no-travel starting tomorrow!! Glad you liked my little piece of nostalgia.


  3. Dear Janet,
    This brings back memories of my own. Lovely.

  4. Mocha says:

    Nice write…the pic is rather creepy though…just me

    • Glad you enjoyed the story. The picture’s just a shot out the window at night while the train’s moving and reflecting our sleeping daughter. 🙂


  5. Great picture. The reflection on the car window stands out so clearly.Yes, trains continue to hold a charm of their own.


    • Many more people use trains in other countries, so maybe they’re not as charming when used regularly. 🙂 Glad you liked the picture.


  6. kdillmanjones says:

    That scimitar moon is a great image!

  7. I am planning a train trip this summer to Portland to see my son. I hope it works out.