I spent roughly 70 hours of my Spring Break on a train traveling from Boston to San Francisco. The following entries detail my experiences.
April 11, 2014
Our train was to leave from Boston on Saturday morning. Luckily my travel buddy kindly offered a place to sleep in Cape Cod, shortening the next morning’s drive.
We left Friday night at 6:45, headed for Sandwich, MA, a small town “on the cape”, as I’ve been informed is proper vernacular. The town was tiny and reminded me of many towns and suburbs. Grocery stores, dentist offices, schools, and houses predominated.
We ate at a Mexican restaurant, “Sam Diegos”. The entrance had big letters spelling, “Buenos Nachos.” I think it was supposed to be a lame play on “Buenas Noches.” As a native Texan, sirens were sounding. “Fake Tex-Mex! Fake Tex-Mex.” In retrospect, the restaurant’s self-deprecating humor should have been refreshing.
In line with my dire predictions, the chips were buried in salt, the salsa was tomato paste with less zest than Tostito’s picante sauce, and the margarita was mostly water. I sat down with Nikki and her friends, an energetic group of early 20-somethings. Their energy and excitement to see each other conjured memories of coming home from college. Their “present mindset” fascinated me as they fantasized about an idyllic summer on the Cape, drinking without a worry. The kind of carefree summer I know I’ll never get back.
In another surprising twist, the conversation turned towards Nashville, Tennessee. The South was discussed in doting, romantic tones. One of their boyfriends serendipitously met a song-writer and may have found his break. Or not. These are the Nashville tales you hear in so many country ballads. I could not believe I was in Massachusetts eating Tex-Mex and discussing country music. There wasn’t a more improbable situation.
They had dreams. “My aunt used to write songs for Miranda Lambert. Your boyfriend should totally call her.” Their eyes gleamed with romance and hints of inebriation. Small tables of hometown friends conspire to change the world in little towns across this country.