first short stop to step out of train for some fresh air
The train leaves out of Little Rock at 11:39. My first panic of the night was realizing I had forgotten to pack my son's DS. Now, playing video games is not what I wanted him to get out of this trip. But we're talking DAYS on a train. I assumed we would need some video game distraction from time to time. I started making this weird hyperventilating sound when I was sitting with Ryan in the car, waiting for the train. Tears were forming. I had even bought him two new games. All of the games were packed; the DS was not! I told Ryan to be prepared to mail it to our hotel, so we would at least have it on the trip home. (Well, we didn't end up doing that since it was cost-prohibitive and really, we just didn't need it, after all, thank goodness. Traveling on a train is really THAT fun.)
My next panic occurred shortly after we settled into our cozy sleeper room. The sleeper rooms were everything I hoped they would be. My mother doesn't understand this, but I just love small spaces. I am obsessed with dollhouses and miniatures. My siblings and I used to love the moments that our great aunt and uncle would let us step into their small travel trailer. It was so cute inside. (They even called it "the dollhouse.") We don't own a mini-van. I actually drive a miniature version of a mini-van. Speaking of cute things and travel trailers, Ryan and I are in current discussions over all things RV lately. I want to sell my house and live in one full-time! Squeals! We probably won't do that anytime soon, but we would like to own one. We'll see.
I had a little time on my hands later at one of
the train stations to make my nails fancy!
Back to my panic...I settled Dash into his top bunk. The beds were already made up for us. My phone suddenly died. Not from lack of battery or being out of area; it just wouldn't turn back on. My week with no ability to converse with Ryan and no way to look up addresses while we're out and about flashed before my eyes, and it did not look good. Plus, all of my travel information was IN my phone. I predicted the first chance I would have to visit a Verizon store would be Monday at the earliest. Because there was nothing else I could do, I told the car attendant. I'm sure he was like, "Uh, lady, not my problem." Actually, he was very nice, and after about 30 minutes of feeling like it was 1993 again without cell service, he let me use his personal phone to call Ryan. Well, of course, my husband was able to offer the suggestion of pushing the power button and the other circle button at the same time for several seconds. It worked! Who knew?!
the food and dining car on my vegan blog. I was surprised that they seat you across the booth from other people. If you are traveling by yourself, they will seat you right next to someone else. Dash LOVED going to the dining car, and I knew he would. My other kids will love it whenever they get the opportunity, as well. It's similar to how they think it's way cool when they have gotten to eat off my maternity ward hospital trays.
Next stop: Chicago! It takes about 14 hours for a train trip from Little Rock to Chicago. It takes about 11 hours to drive the same distance. Not bad if you ask me, considering we slept the first 7 or 8 hours, then took another rest/naptime later in our little room.
another shot of the dining car
until I thought for sure we would not be able to make it. It was so hot. I was trying to walk in every area of shade we were afforded, but I felt it was just too hot and arduous for the baby. If we were spending all day in D.C., actually visiting museums and things along the way, then walking would have been fine. But our intended destination was over 2 1/2 miles away; this was not the day to walk the whole stretch.
The pedi-cabs looked fun, so we opted for that. Unfortunately, it dawned on me that this was Memorial Day weekend. In our nation's capital. Not the best planning. Traffic was hideous, and it was still really hot in the pedi-cab. We got a nice breeze, though, when he was able to pedal fast.
He explained to me in different terms
that it felt surreal to see it in person.
standing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial,
facing the Washington Monument
closer shot of the Washington Monument
He immediately fell asleep when we got into the cab which took us back to Union Station! It was a good "what a fun two days" kind of tired.
To be continued...