Friday, November 18, 2022

Train Ride

Warning! This blog contains one of the worst jokes in the world. 

As I keep saying, Scotland is quite small and very little of it is horizontal, so we don't really do trains in a big way. The only notable train ride we have is up the west coast from Glasgow to Mallaig. It's quite nice. It goes across Rannoch Moor and the Glenfinnan Viaduct (Harry Potter). The train is so sophisticated that the driver calls a cafe with the breakfast order and somebody from the cafe hands in the order when the train stops at the next station. I had a fried egg and potato scone roll. It's a kind of stewed tea and slightly warm food experience. Most people take a picnic. 
For the interest of understanding that journey takes 5 hours 20 minutes to cover the 150 miles. Not exactly the bullet express.

When we payed off our mortgage we took the Rocky Mountaineer across bits of Canada. I'd never climbed up steps to get on a train before or ever seen a train with an upstairs. It was May and the grain trains were going in the opposite direction, hundreds of carriages. 
I think I'd written another novel by the time it took one of them to pass us. 

In Duluth, on Lake Superior, there's an enchanting wee train museum and you can go on a train ride which takes you just a few miles along the lake, and then the engine moves from one end to the other and pulls you back along the way you came. Each carriage is from a different period of time and the whole thing is run by rather eccentric volunteers who just love the train. 

When the train passes anybody,  people wave, it has a real feel good factor to it. 
On board the catering resembles that of the Glasgow/Mallaig express but the music is something else. Here's a wee walk round the museum and a list of some of the songs we heard. I bet one of them becomes your earworm for the day.

Last Train to San Fernando

Casey Jones Steaming and Rollin

Last Train to Clarksville

Morning Town Ride

Runaway Train

Midnight Train to Georgia

Freight train, freight train

Night Train

Love Train

9 to 5

Chattanooga Choo Choo

Pennsylvania 6500

another town, another train

Working on the railroad...


Meanwhile my friend's son got two things for his birthday. One of them was a brand new pair of trainers that he had always wanted and the other one was a rather spirited kitten. It only took two days for the kitten to devour the shoes and then make a run for the garden when the backdoor was left open. The next day a police officer knocked on the door holding the aforementioned  felonious feline and he said. 'Pardon me boy, is this the cat that chewed your new shoes.'

Don't say you weren't warned!



  1. Who doesn't love trains! If you're ever in Durango, Colorado, take the narrow-gauge steam train to Silverton. It's a hair-raising ride and a load of fun!

  2. That's now on the bucket list! The only thing I know about Durango is that it's the birthplace of Sepp Kuss, the Jumbo Visma cyclist.

  3. Any train ride is a good train ride! There's a steam-engine train from Cape Town to the wine lands. Two preferred enjoyments in one.

  4. We once thought of doing the big one that goes from Cape Town right up through Africa- then it mentioned that sometimes there's a plane replacement service due to 'unrest'. I get enough of that at home!

  5. Oh I love trains! And feeling like I'm getting to go places without doing anything. Thanks for that. The joke, well...