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Amtrak Car Attendants Have Seen It All!

A week or so ago, I wrote about some of the crazy things that happen to Amtrak car attendants. In fact, when I travel on Amtrak, I usually make it a practice to chat with those folks and, believe me, they all have stories.
For instance, I was once told about a honeymoon couple boarding one of Amtrak’s long distance trains and being shown to their bedroom. The groom took one look and turned to the car attendant in a rage. He had been told there would be a fireplace in their room and, by God, where was it? Somewhere, a bunch of his pals were laughing their heads off, but any way you cut it, there is still no cure for stupid.
A car attendant on the Empire Builder recently told me about two couples — let’s say the Smiths and the Joneses — who met and struck up a friendship in the lounge car after dinner in the dining car one evening. Many beers later, Mrs. Smith said she was sleepy and left to go back to her bedroom. A half hour went by and Mr. Jones, deciding that he had had enough, excused himself and, leaving his wife still chatting with Mr. Smith, headed off to his accommodations.
By coincidence, both couples had been assigned to Bedroom C, but in different cars. Mr. Jones found his way to Bedroom C but, as you have already figured out, he was in the wrong car. Sliding the door open, he slipped into the bedroom, stripped down to his skivvies and, feeling frisky, began nuzzling the woman he thought was his wife. According to the car attendant — who was now laughing so hard she could barely speak — Mrs. Smith was apparently both surprised and pleased by the amorous advances she was getting in the darkened bedroom.
Of course, at that moment, her real husband showed up and found another man climbing into the berth with his wife. Enraged, he began pounding on poor Mr. Jones, who still had not realized he was in the wrong room. Thinking, instead, that he was being mugged, he fought back valiantly. The commotion brought the car attendant and one of the conductors who separated Smith and Jones and restored order. It took a while, but everyone finally figured out what had happened, peace and quiet ensued, and the Empire Builder continued on it’s way to Seattle.
Think I’m exaggerating? The next time you take a long distance Amtrak train somewhere, just ask your car attendant if he or she has had any strange experiences.  You’ll see.


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