The Train You Hear

Has long been the lifeblood for Marfa… but it no longer stops there. You can hear it coming in the middle of the night but it will only stop at Alpine, the next town about thirty minutes drive from Marfa. Alpine will be of no interest to art aficionados, other than finding more affordable accommodation during the Chinati Weekend when the crowds invade the tiny town and all of its 12 hotels; but we simply had to have a look at its quaint little train station and the much larger Big Bend Saddlery, where we shopped for hats, ties and the like (not saddles, no…)

Back in Marfa, we walked under the watchful eye of El Cosmico before returning to the town centre – where we came across a “No Parking” sign in perfect Greek… Only in Marfa!

And, finally, back to where we started; a full round. It was an unforgettable trip – and, yet, there was more to come!

Marfa, TX

October 08-09, 2018

We Rode in Style

On our way back to New York, we hopped out of the car and into the luxury of a Strasburg Rail Road First Class Parlour with velvet sofas, upholstered armchairs and chilled wine, carried by a steam engine for a 45 minute trip through the fertile, lush Lancaster County where the time stood (almost) still.

The Strasburg Rail Road is a shortline built to connect the town of Strasburg with the main line. It is the oldest continuously operating railroad in the western hemisphere and the oldest public utility in Pennsylvania.

September 3rd, 2018

Washington D.C. – First impressions

We had been warned, when we first came to New York, that every couple of months we must get out of the City or else we’d risk confusing its inherent surreality for normality. For the reality is, there is no place on earth like New York City. And it can mess up with your perception of time and space.

Taking this advice to heart, two months after visiting Philadelphia we took off on our second trip. A fortnight in three cities, starting with the capital: Washington D.C.

First impressions ~

a) it always strikes me as curious how birds can get so lost as to end up in the bowels of the beast that is Penn Station;

b) 3,5 hours by train on a rainy day and my collection of moody, blurry photos has been largely enriched;

c) D.C. is clean and neat, and it reminded me of those tidy, groomed cities one comes across just about everywhere in Switzerland;

d) all subway stations look alike: grey, concrete, clean, clearly marked, easy to follow even by first-time visitors (as New York subway would have been, in a parallel universe);

e) a local liquor shop with a quirky sense of humour – that was a warm welcome! Made me wonder whether quirkiness is a common feature among Washingtonians?!

En route to Washington D.C.

April 22nd, 2017

Atlantic city – Aboard the quiet car to the beach

On the train to Philadelphia, we had discovered the quiet car completely by accident. A great feature, one that trains in Europe would greatly benefit from. Why this has not been implemented on the other side of the Atlantic, is a mystery to me. We now ask the train attendant for the quiet car, every time we’re about to board a train.

Half an hour later and… what a difference 60 miles make!

A brilliant sunshine, a light breeze, unseasonably warm, an enormous beach, no crowds.

“Enjoy God’s gift to humanity!” an excited fellow walker exclaimed…

“Enjoy!” we echoed, smiling back… “as long as you remain under the boardwalk”, we added silently.

Atlantic City
February 23rd, 2017