Wednesday, November 19, 2014

LA Should be Beautiful This Time of Year, All that Snow

at MKA (2) We were standing next to the empty tracks shivering, Munchkinhead and me.  “Which sleeping car is it like?”  She asked me through chattering teeth.  “The second one,”  I replied bouncing up and down to stay warm.  We laughed.  No one had mentioned White Christmas, but I knew exactly what she was referencing, what she was asking about.  We’re sisters; we work like that.    At MKA Amtrak Station after Mommy dropped us off.

It was the start of our great #Schultzsters Adventure, a hashtag created for us by the darling Meg&Jack who rather adorably assumed we already called ourselves that.  We do now. 

The dates had been announced nearly a year ago.  The next California State Bar Intellectual Property Section Annual Intellectual Property Institute would be held on November 6th and 7th.  Our Executive Committee meeting would be held the day before that, on the 5th, exactly one day after Munchkinhead’s birthday.  When the location was announced, there was only one idea in my head.  The Orange County Hyatt at Disneyland.  “Hey Munchkinhead, wanna go to Disneyland for your birthday?”

Before long, we had a sleeper car room reserved on the Southwest Chief, going from Chicago through Kansas City to Los Angeles.  Through Kansas City?!  A little bit longer and lot bit prodding later, Alfred had a ticket to join us.  And we were off!

Munchkinhead and I started in Milwaukee on the Hiawatha and switched trains in Chicago.  Thanks to our sleeper car – and thanks to Amtrak’s fabulous reward miles program for that free sleeper! – we got to hang out in the fancy lounge where we giggled with anticipation as we ate peanut butter sandwiches out of a Victoria’s Secret bag.  Ah, lunch on the road.

Katrina in the sleeper car (4)We left Chicago just before 4pm and by 10ish, were in Kansas City, eagerly running around the platform looking for Alfred.  When she and Munchkinhead spotted each other on the platform, there was running from both directions and a giant group hug in the middle of the main walkway.  And chatter.  So much chatter.  Alfred slept in coach that first night and we traded the next night so she could have a bed, though I heard Munchkinhead made her climb into the upper berth.   Munchkinhead in our Sleeper Car, excited for the adventure.

WP_20141101_031 Schultzsters

We hung out together in our room and in the observation car, knitting, cross-stitching and watching the landscape run past.  At smoking breaks, where the train stops for longer amounts at a station and the passengers can detrain for a bit, we drank in fresh air, took pictures with the station signs and stood together singing “Snow. Snow. Snow. Snow. Snow!”  Apparently we were all trying to be Judy.

Albuqurque (5)

Me and Alfred in Albuquerque

San Bernadino (1)

Munchkinhead in San Bernadino

By the time we reached our final destination of Fullerton, CA, I think we were rather infamous among the train passengers.  Munchkinhead had been wearing her special Birthday Star plastic canvas crown around the train, especially to meals.  People not only wished her happy birthday when she had it on, they wished her happy birthday or asked if she was the birthday girl when she wasn’t wearing it.  The people near Alfred’s coach seat knew about our adventure and were very nice when I swapped places with her.  And then there was that thing with my phone.  It slid off the seat into a narrow crevice between the seat frame and the shelf/stairs for the upper bed.  It took two guys 20 minutes, a knife, a folded paper bag and a crowbar to retrieve it.  I’m still rather amazed they managed to do it.

We had a fabulous time riding the train together.  The trip seemed super short.  We’ll have to find somewhere to go together that takes longer to get to, and maybe to somewhere that actually has snow.

1 comment:

munchkinhead said...