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vagabonds3 "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow mindedness." Mark Twain

California, Here We Come

USA | Sunday, 7 July 2019 | Views [48]

Business Class, Coach Starlight

Business Class, Coach Starlight

COMPARED TO TRAVEL TICKETING SITES like kayak and orbitz, Amtrak is woefully lacking.  There are only a handful of trains but there are few routing options.  They don’t provide a map or even list the intermediate stops.  Which explains why we were surprised that our train from Sacramento to LA is the same Coast Starlight that we will take from LA to Seattle — just in the opposite direction.  At least now I’ll know when to head to the observation car for the best photo ops.

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   California Coast                              Pacific Kelp Beds

Since the trip was only 12 hours, all in daylight, we opted for more economic — and as it turns out, more comfortable — Business Class seats, although we've booked a roomette for the overnight trip to Seattle.  The big problem onboard was the temperature . . . cold, cold, cold.  As we passed people on the beach we wondered if they were crazy swimming when we were freezing.  We also had to buy our own food which, despite the food vouchers included in our fare, wasn’t cheap.  Thankfully the Subway sandwich we brought from Sacramento eased the pain.  On the plus side, the Coast Starlight was not just on-time, it arrived at Union Station almost an hour early.  Once again we could see our chosen hotel, Metro Plaza, just a short walk from the station.

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    Dogders v Padres, Dodger Stadium

We are in town mainly to see a Dodgers game, one of four ballparks John has yet to visit.  A pleasant surprise, there’s a free bus from Union Station to Dodger Stadium, making the logistics even easier.  Despite the popularity of the Dodgers in SoCal — “LA Bleeds Blue” is the local motto — I wonder how many fans know where “Dodger” came from.  Many would be surprised to learn that “Dem Bums” got their name from dodging the streetcars in Brooklyn.  The stadium is showing its age — only Wrigley Field and Fenway Park are older — but games still begin with the National Anthem and 3 strikes and you’re still out.  PS, the Padres won raising their record to .500 at the All-Star break for the first time since 2010, incidntally moving ahead of our faltering Rockies.

 

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John and Connie, Sheikh Zayad Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi

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