On trains and books and grandmothers

November 14, 2017

In trying to remember the title of a book I am sure is by Agatha Christie, I remembered that I read the book on the train, which then led me to thinking about how much I used to ride the Amtrak. I have fond memories of riding the train, mostly because I would ride it to go visit my grandmother. But also because, of course, I did so much reading while on those train rides.

(As an aside, there are so many amazing Soul Train GIFs. God bless the internet.)

I’m going to Oakland for Thanksgiving by plane, but now I’m wishing I had explored taking the train. (It’s not realistic for Thanksgiving, but still.) (Also, I did look into doing my cross-country move via train as a way to transport my car, but there is only one auto train route and it’s from DC to Orlando.)

My point is, I think, that I’m going to make an effort to ride the train more when I travel. I will also keep in mind that I only rode the train from Maryland to Connecticut, so I’m not sure I could handle a much longer trip. Also, I can no longer read in the car anymore, so I wonder if that also applies to trains. That would mean using audiobooks, which is fine, but not quite the same. Also, I have nowhere to go at the time, so that’s a thing. (Maybe I should add “take a train ride somewhere” to my things to do before I turn 40 list.)

Memories are tricky.

I can’t remember any of the titles of books I’ve read on trains, but I can remember scenes from them or impressions of them. One book, for example, prominently featured a chandelier.

I wonder what it would be like if I could remember all the books I’ve read in my lifetime.  That would be wild, especially considering I can barely remember the books I’ve read this year.

Lots of things are reminding me of my grandmother lately. Probably because the holidays are coming, and I almost always spent them with her. There was an art piece at the studio I went to on Saturday titled “Lucy” (my grandmother’s name was Lucille); the artist was a sassy elderly lady. And now Agatha Christie and train rides. Not to mention my Sophia and Dorothy dolls on my TV stand (my grandmother loved The Golden Girls. And TV. Someone asked how I could watch so much TV–which, honestly, this isn’t even a lot of TV for me. I feel like I’m not watching enough–and the answer is that I learned from my grandmother who LOVED TV. I mean, most of the TV I watched, I watched with or because of her. So she is also to thank for my vast array of pop culture knowledge.)


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