Riding a train always makes me stop and stare outside at the moving 3-D picture outside. Especially so with the Vancouver,Canada-to-Seattle,Washington train. First it’s a fifteen minute introduction of urban art, where amateur graffiti artists are trying to thrive on motionless abandoned train car canvases (the basic ‘I’m going to write my name in crazy bold letters’ style).
Then a half-hour of masterpieces-in-tunnels-and-more-daring art, which immediately transitions over a bridge to the industrialized nation of factories and quiet towns.
Following that sad little area, is three hours of crossing through the middle of wide lakes and random bodies of water and nature. It’s the landscape you see in calendars, postcards, and sometimes religious websites emblazoned with “The Wonders of God’s Creation” (or something to that effect). You can see for miles of blue water to one side enclosed by mountains far off in the distance, and cloud formations filling up the spaces in between.
(These are the exact islands we passed… I know this because I get to do some sort of coastal archaeology there)
The other side is almost identical, but instead of water, there’s flat, rolling hills that remind me of some non-existent land that would probably rival the landscape of J.R.R. Tolkein’s fantasy worlds.
I was so busy staring (probably with a vacant look) that it wasn’t for a while until I noticed this weird fuzzy black-and-white stuffed animal apparently looking out the window with the same blank stare I had on my face. Same position, same angle, same intensity, a little freaky for a lifeless little dog/cow/sheep/whatever it is.
It turns out that a little girl had left him in that position when she went somewhere else on the train for 2 hours. Trains make me think more than class lectures do, sadly.
(P.S. I didn’t take these pictures, but they are quite dead-on.. Just trying to give visual aid here)