Time for a Train Trip?

Not for me, I’m afraid.

Normally, by this time of year I would have made one or two trips and at least one of those would have included one of Amtrak’s long-distance trains.

But not with this damn pandemic. 

That will eventually change, I hope, so I have started planning a trip. This itinerary starts with “Day One, Day Two, etc.” I’ll plug in the actual dates when I think it’s safe to travel.

The interesting thing is, I would usually fly from here in Hawaii to the West Coast, take Amtrak across the country, and then fly to London out of Boston.

But this next time— and it came as a surprise to me—I’m really not sure I want to include Amtrak in that plan. Why? Because, in the  name of cutting costs, the corporate geniuses running Amtrak have effectively reduced the dining car experience to something I can actually do without.

We’re now being served frozen meals, heated in a microwave. And, until the pandemic is over, we’re dining alone in our roomette or alone at a table in the lounge car.

The fact is, for the foreseeable future, there IS no dining car experience. And, fully as much as the train ride itself, that’s what kept me coming back time after time, year after year.

Or, rather, it did.