Traveling coast made for gains

This column will be Travelogue Part II of our West Coast Trip in 2018. Can’t go any further without comparing the differences in the weather. We left lows in the upper-50s with highs in the mid-70s with rather low humidity to the oppressive heat and humidity we walked into in Wichita this past Thursday night when we got off the plane from Port Angeles, Wash.

We sandwiched the Coast Starlight Amtrak train trip up the West Coast from L.A. to Tacoma, Wash., between visits to Nancy’s brother David and wife Sally in Sherman Oaks, (L.A.) and son Dan and his wife, Katie, in Port Angeles.

The Camelis were in Lake Tahoe, Calif., at the same time. with George’s entire family (10 kids and their families) who were celebrating George’s dad’s 80th birthday.

We ate very well in all phases of the trip. We had planned to stop at Bill’s Burgers, but he had decided to close the entire week of the Fourth. We ate at Duke’s in Malibu instead, which made a great substitute. David and Sally are very good cooks in their own right, and we ate very well at their home. And what Katie makes in her kitchen is out of this world too. Yes, I gained a little.

The train trip lasted for 36 hours when it should have been completed in 33 hours. We checked when it arrived from then on, and it wasn’t nearly that late before and after that day we arrived in Tacoma. And as Dan had planned to pick us up three hours earlier for the two-hour trip to their house, we decided to stay in Tacoma and ride over the next morning. We were drop-dead tired and didn’t want to go for a ride again that night.

We met many interesting people on the train from all parts of the country and the world. (There seem to be many folks who travel by train all of the time.) We had a roomette that included all meals in the dining car. We sat across from travelers from Australia, New Zealand, Holland, Boston twice (different folks) and one pair of gals who wanted to be left to gab between themselves.

If we do any more train trips, we will for sure get a sleeper room. The roomette is way too tight to suit us. After the recliner seats were pulled together and the bunk above was pulled down there was literally no place to stand. Plus when the train rocks back and forth you roll with it.

We were fortunate enough to wake up in time to see Mount Shasta the only early morning we were on the train.

We took the ferry to Victoria, Canada, with Dan and Katie. It’s 21 miles, and it gets there in about 90 minutes. Everything there is first class and we will try to go there again.

Maybe when we do the train across Canada some day?

Did I say it was hot in Kansas?

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is

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