Thursday, October 04, 2012

31 Days of Flashbacks: Train Trip West: Day #7

Our Train Trip saga continues...

August 11, 2011
In which we wake up on park benches, meet up with more family members, head down the California coast, and sleep on a yacht.

When we left off yesterday we were sleeping on park benches outside the train station in San Fransisco that was closed for the night. Finally 4:30am came around and the train station opened back up. We (and the homeless guy that had been sleeping on a nearby bench - one of a surprisingly small number of people we saw all night) moved inside and set up camp on the floor and most of us promptly fell asleep for a while more. It was warmer inside. That was nice.
Mom and Dad catching some Zzzz's
Everyone else conked out on the floor
 At about 7am Steph and I went out looking for food for the train trip down the California coast. We had planned to check out The Public Market during our time in Emeryville because, in our research before our trip, we had seen it was walkable. It was "open" but nothing but a coffee shop was actually open until 9 so we left. We found a couple out walking their dog and asked them where we could buy some food. They mentioned Trader Joe's but it wasn't going to open until 8 which was cutting it too close. They then told us that there was a deli on the ground level of an apartment building across the way that might have what we were looking for. We headed over and found bagels, tomatos, cucumbers and cream cheese for our lunch then headed back to the station.

The Coastline Starlight was on time and we got into seats that Doug and Kendra, who were already on the train coming down the coast from parts farther north with Jack,  had reserved for us (yay!! So helpful when wanting to get seats together as a long group). We went and ordered some hot chocolate and coffee and came up to the observation car to drink and ate our poptarts (a healthy breakfast -haha) with Kendra, Doug and Jack. After I finished my breakfast I headed back to our seats to take a nap for a couple of hours (all those hours as night watchman had worn me out!). We enjoyed our bagels  w/ cream cheese, tomatos and cucumbers for lunch then I spent most of the day at our seats in the back with the kids who came back from the observation car to play including a random friend that the girls had made who preferred hanging out with my girls in the coach seats over hanging out in her sleeping car.
Aunt Steph doing Lydia's hair
Hanging out with Aunt Kendra and cousin Jack
 We saw some beautiful views headed down the California Coast. 

  We arrived at Union Station in Los Angeles at around 9pm and Steph and I took some carry-on stuff and went to sign paperwork for the rental van while the other 10 went to gather the rest of our luggage. We all piled into the big white 12 passenger van and Steph did a great job driving in the crazy LA traffic as we headed down to the Long Beach area where we were staying for the night. We slept on a yacht, one of Friendships' two ships that they have out there. Steph, the kids and I slept in "the salon" while K, Doug and Jack slept downstairs in one of the bedrooms and Steve and Debbie slept in the motor home thing on shore.

Click these links to read about Day #1, Day #2, Day #3, Day #4, Day #5 and Day #6.

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