12 June 2010


Up with the sun, watched it rise from my cedar deck, wrapped in a blanket and with a singing hot cup of dark brew.

Buck and Camp's sweet little courtyard in Marfa. Taylor put me in touch with these two awesome human beings and I dropped by their place on my way out of town. Theirs is quite a story, artists with very life as their medium; that and some blocks of wood and an old church+parsonage turned workshop/music venue/living quarters in Marfa. It makes me happy to know that people like this are out there, doing good creative and community-minded deeds in our world.

Our illustrious conductor in Alpine. He went a little heavy with the aftershave, but was a real nice fella.

"I could cry with relief. I have magically escaped the bowels of Amtrak and have completed my upwards (or backwards) journey to the heights of heaven known as the Lounge Car. I never knew life could be so sweet. There's light, fresher air, relative quiet, normal people for heaven's sake. I can swing this, might even stay here til morning. Outside there are verdant patches of young corn, groves of trees -- mesquite, perhaps? We're hurtling through what looks very much to be ripe wheat but it looks awfully short and seems pretty early for that. I've been wrong about grains before. Parts of the landscape look a bit Tuscan, tall, slender cedar trees framing the squares of crops. Beautiful. Yep, Evie's staying put."

My very clever dinner: $4 cheese and cracker tray from the Dining Car, a perfect avocado and tomato I had brought along with me, complete with a nice Penfold's Cabernet which I had smartly decanted into a water bottle. Gee, self, you are such a pro. Yeah, self, I know. I saved half of the tray's contents to have with my perfect mango and a cup of Amtrak coffee for breakfast. All it requires is a little thought, and when you're on a train, there's nothing like a little meal-planning to pass the time.

Sleepy evening hours, heavy eyelids and the lull of the rocking train.
"The views are, well, stupefying. sagebrush, cacti and atmospheric purple mesas as far as the eye can reach. Irrigation systems are at work out in the fields ahead, glistening in the soft yellow, sideways light of evening. Something about this time of day, the way it paints the tired world with colors that just don't occur at any other time of day. I am SO sleeping up here. I have scored a three-seater with a side table and will be damned if I'm sharing. You heard me."