Sunday, December 11, 2011

It's a Wrap!

Days 6-7
It's time to head home. We catch the hotel shuttle to the Amtrak Station in Solana Beach, a cute town that begs for future exploration. We catch the 4:55 north bound Surfliner train to Los Angeles. It passes through some beautiful beach towns and I had hoped for some daylight photos but this time of year night comes early. I do  capture photos of a stunning, crazy red/orange sky sunset.
Sunset from the Amtrak Surfliner

In addition to the great views the Surfliner offers an amenity for the internet set, free wireless connection. According to a conductor who we chatted with on our journey, Amtrak plans to install internet on most trains in the near future. We reach LA and cab it to The Sheraton Hotel (Hotwire $83). The room is comfy and the huge pillows are wonderful. We hit the lobby bar, sip wine and eat fried calamari. On a full stomach we  say goodnight.

The next day we catch a cab to Union Station after being shouted at by a large group of' occupy protesters. They shout, "Shame on you!" Nothing like a large, threatening gang of people to start your morning adrenaline. I'm not sure what I should be ashamed about. I guess because I'm older and well dressed I'm a target. I try to dialogue with the loudest of the bunch but he will have none of this. Seemed more like a lynch mob than a revolution. The cab driver who sounded Russian does not appear intimidated as he whisks us past the fray.

At Union Station I observe the closed off space I had blogged about earlier is now being set up for a fashion shoot. Great location! BTW unless this is a police sting don't leave several thousand dollars worth of camera, unguarded, within reaching distance of potential opportunists. Grab, run, gone!
Fashion shoot LA Union Station

We check bags, receive our seating assignment and then we have an unusual breakfast. A Wetzel's Pretzel! They do have these in the Bay Area but I had not tried one until now. April got me a salted buttered one and OMG it was good!
Wetzel's Pretzel LA Union Station - All Aboard!

We board the train and head north to Emeryville. I was rocked to sleep by the motion of the train but awoke in time to capture this video just outside of Santa Barbara.

After San Luis Obispo we climb a little mountain and I grab some still photos.

Amrtak Coast Starlight 14 north of San Luis Obispo

April cranks up the computer and we watch The Green Lantern movie. I wasn't expecting much, but it was quite entertaining. After a twelve hour journey we arrive in Emeryville only five minutes late. We disembark and watch the train head north on to Seattle. It's good to be home. 

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