About forty hours later, I am at Jeff and Caeli’s in Irvine!
Pretty uneventful journey, except —
Well. It seems a bit callous to call the suicide in front of the train just outside Tacoma uneventful. But we didn’t even know what happened until we were well on the way again, outside of vague announcements (“An incident has occurred outside the train that does not affect your personal safety”) and whispered, telephone-style rumors, so it was hard to muster up personal grief. And apparently this happens, like, on a daily basis. But not an auspicious beginning to the trip — nor an auspicious end to somebody’s life, I suppose.
There were two separate parties of middle-aged upper middle class drunk people heading to Portland for the weekend, who were increasingly loud, but thankfully more funny and less assholeish. Though I know more about their sexual proclivities than I probably ever needed to.
So goodbye, Pacific Northwest. I am sorry that we got along so poorly. You’re like that really hot person who’s such a jackass you can’t maintain your crush, even if you kinda want to. But you’re pretty.
I met no interesting characters this journey, sadly — to be honest, I didn’t really talk to anyone except Larry-the-cafe/bar dude, who’s my new best friend. Though I think the bartender is automatically everyone’s new best friend in an enclosed space. Aforementioned drunk parties cheered loudly every time he made an announcement on the loudspeaker.
I hadn’t really slept well for about two days/nights before I left, so I was pretty loopy, but naturally as soon as it got dark I was wide awake. The sunset was neat, anyway.
But I am growing less amused with being awake.
So I stayed up writing and dicking around until like three or four in the morning, then finally curled up in my seat with my blanket, a wadded-up sweater pillow, and Welcome to Night Vale queued up, and slept.
And slept, and slept. For like, hours. Is this what normal people do? It was glorious. I haven’t slept that long or that deeply in fucking forever. But it’s hard to sleep well when you don’t know where you’ll be sleeping or what you’ll be doing the next day, and/or are in someone else’s space. I love these long train trips because they’re so choiceless: you know what you’ll be doing and where you’ll be, and there’s fuck-all you can do about it.
Despite the Tacoma incident, we got to LAX pretty much on time, made my connecting to train to Irvine, got off on Irvine — without my backpack.
Hopped back on frantically before the doors closed and grabbed my bag, by which time the train was already moving. Well, fuck. So close.
Thankfully, this was the Pacific Surfliner train, which is pretty urban/suburban with frequent stops. If it’d been on the Coast Starlight, I’d’ve been so boned I don’t even wanna think about it, but the next stop was San Juan Capistrano, which was only like fifteen minutes from Irvine, so Jeff came to pick me up, well-deservedly making fun of me.
And now I am comfortably ensconced on the couch, surrounded by cats, as it should be. Jeff said the fact that Rorschach did not go fleeing when I walked in means he remembers me. He’s my buddy.
Mostly I think they’re just happy to have more stuff to investigate.