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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Sleeping Car Darryl




When you take a long trip on a train, you select a sleeping car for your comfort~Sleeping Car Darryl comes to attend your every need~he makes sure you know when dinner is being served in the dining car~helps you decide which delicious meal to order and he turns your seating compartment into a bedroom retreat~complete with a mint on your pillow. He will bring you soda and ice, a mixed drink or a comforting hot chocolate and graham cracker treat.
My best friend, Lynn and I(with whom I have had lots of travels and more stories to be told) traveled this way from Indianapolis to Dallas several times~after we decided that airplane travel was not her bag. She wouldn't sit down in the plane and wandered around it talking to bounty hunters, estate jewelry brokers/thieves and transvestites~anyone who would talk to her to calm her anxiety (Me thinks a good swift shot of whiskey would have done the trick) Ah, yes, train travel was THE way to go for her.
I had just started seeing KennyRogersLookAlikeBeforeThePlasticSurgeryWentWrong. I asked Sleeping Car Darryl to be sure to let me know when we would creep into a train depot so that I might use the phone to call him~cell phones weren't prevalent in that day. Darryl came to let me know that at 2:30am we would be pulling into a small town depot in Nowheresville and he would help us jump onto the platform.
Darryl was a prissy kinda guy~ well dressed in his train uniform. When he came to collect me he gave me the eye. "I'll help you onto the platform, Miss Kim, but I'm not goin' in there 'with' you with that outfit on ya" he stared shamingly. My night train outfit was~from the bottom up~Red suede shoes, yellow socks, a knee length red Dallas night shirt and my red 3/4 length wool car coat! I have to admit, it was a little bizarre but I had to throw on something quick! Darryl helped us jump and I mean literally jump onto the platform and then he swiftly ran on ahead looking all around making sure no one saw him with me. I don't know why he was so concerned~of the 25 people in the depot, my friend counted about 10 people who actually had teeth!
Now mind you, the sleeping births on a train are very compact. By day you have a glass window wall to divide you from the hallway and you become acquainted with the other passengers as they move up and down the narrow passage. By night, your seats fold into beds one on top of the other like a bunk and a curtain is pulled for privacy. The berth on top is only about shoulder width from the ceiling and only about a body wide so there is not much room to thrash around if you are a restless sleeper. If you are claustrophobic..best not sleep there. I felt it wouldn't suit Lynn~remember how she felt confined in the airplane. There is not a lot of room to change your clothes once your bed is made we discovered..kinda makes you think you should have worn your pjs to the dining car...so we decided we would sleep in our clothes since the only other option was to try to contortion our way out of our tight jeans and into our pajamas. Well, that sleeping in our clothes thing didn't last long. Auggh... A charlie horse in the leg is not a good thing to have when you are flailing in 6 inches of head room and a denim leg that's tangled on your ankle. Suddenly I realized that the privacy curtain drawn was stuck in my waist band and my butt whisked it open! I hoped Lynn's night gown didn't ride up in the night!

I miss the train.