CHI-BOS on the Lake Shore Limited.
First, I am delighted to report that there is WiFi on the Lake Shore Limited . . . well, some of the time, anyway. Still, it’s a big improvement from none at all. Also, as reported earlier, there is indeed no dining car on this train, but the microwaved French Toast at breakfast was acceptable and the server produced some sausage on the side for me, despite the fact that it didn’t come with this packaged meal. We’re currently running about 50 minutes behind schedule, but should make up some of that by the time we leave Albany.
I shouldn’t be annoyed by stuff like this, but it’s now 24 hours later, and I’m still irritated by a guy who came into the restaurant at the Knickerbocker Hotel yesterday morning–that was back in Chicago. He was mid-30s, had a scraggly beard, and was wearing jeans, a T-shirt and rubber slippers, the kind you would call flip-flops or go-aheads. This wasn’t “casual attire”; this was sloppy.
He sat down at a table near the entrance of the restaurant, pulled out a laptop, donned a headset, and stared tapping on the computer keypad. Moments later, he began what turned into a lengthy conversation with someone, using a microphone built into the computer or possibly the headset.
This bozo was conducting business in the hotel dining room. He ordered coffee, but when I had finished eating and left the restaurant 15-20 minutes later, he was still tapping away on his computer and speaking to his invisible colleague without having ordered anything in the way of breakfast.
I know he’s a hotel guest, and I know this is done all the time in coffee shops, but this was in the hotel’s restaurant. All I could think of was how delicious it would be if an imposing maître d’ had been there to tell this guy to put on some goddam shoes, shut down his office, and either order something to eat or get the hell out! Alas, I suppose the guy would probably be surprised to learn that some of us old timers find his behavior wanting.
The Lake Shore stopped at Buffalo’s DePew station earlier this morning. The last time I was here, it was February and minus 33 degrees, bringing to mind the inscription on the headstone of character actor and comic, W.C. Fields: “On the whole, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.”
And, right about noon, we stopped at Syracuse where I hopped off to say “hello” to a regular reader of these posts. I find that to be great fun.