Travelling is so much about the people. Long after the journals have gathered dust, and the photos are starting to fade, it is the people one meets who stay in one’s memory.
On the train from Los Angeles to Emeryville, the Coast Starlight, it was Richard. He hails from Utah and was heading up to Oregon. We talked for literally hours, down in the snackbar area of the dining car. In that time we solved the problems of the world, and some personal ones as well. A very keen and interesting conversationalist.
During the 36 hr trip on the California Zephyr, the train from Emeryville to Denver, there were many opportunities to meet with interesting folk. Of these, two stood out. Two young man from Grand Junction.
One was about to enter year twelve, and keen to play college football. It was his whole focus, and he sure had the build and enthusiasm for it. The other a young man in his early twenties was looking at going back to school in West Virginia. It was refreshing to hear them so positive about their future. Both had a very clear idea of where they were going.
Left me thinking, if this is a sample of who is going to take care of our future, we’re in pretty good hands.
It was at the bus terminal in Denver that I met Pat, who was also going to Longmont. Pat lived in Denver, was semi retired and told me quite a bit about the local area… and whence she hails.
And then there was James. James had worked all his life in the Sheriff department in Mississippi. This led to his retirement job of a few days a week as security guard at the MS Welcome Centre on I-55 South. He made me most welcome. Told me the best place to park overnight (where it would be quietest and he could keep an eye on me) and welcomed me into his air conditioned office on this hot night.
Besides letting me use his microwave, we had some lovely conversations and ended up sharing all about our grandchildren. Always of interest to other grandparents. I left James with some Ken Duncan pictures of Central Australia from an old calendar I have.