As I traveled this great country of the United States, I decided to take a three-day excursion on a train. I didn’t know what to expect, but what I received was priceless. Not only was I able to embrace the beautiful sites of our country, I was also able to adopt temporary friendships that gave me greater in site of the human race.
I boarded the train and was escorted to my sleeper car by a gentleman who introduced himself and acquainted me with the train and all of the accommodations that were available to me. After he left, I decided to take a tour of the train. I located the bathrooms, showers, snack bar and the dining cart.
I walked around making observation of individuals who were relaxed—absorbing nothing but time—the only thing we had to hold on to for the next three days. I saw a man on a laptop, a woman knitting, an older gentleman video taping the countryside, a couple of children playing video games, a young couple snuggling, swapping thoughts and a large gentleman wearing jeans and red suspenders eating a lunch that he obviously had packed. Although we all looked different and came from different lifestyles, we all had one thing in common—the anticipation of reaching our destinations.
There was an open call for lunch, so I decided to indulge. I was seated with a seasoned couple who decided to share their twenty plus years of their marriage with me. After our order was taken, the woman, dressed in a cream cashmere fitted sweater, with a string of beads draped around her neck dived into a Q&A session of my life. She first asked where was I from and where was I going. Then she wanted to know if I was married and if I had any children. My occupation was her next question. I chose to answer her questions the way my father taught me to answer questions from a stranger, so I bounced the same questions back to the woman. She didn’t seem to be uncomfortable with our volley of getting acquainted, so I relaxed as well and supplied her with my personals.
Over lunch, I learned that the couple had known one another for over forty years and had worked together at some point in their lives. The two of them had been married once before and for whatever reason had found love again together. Proudly, the gentleman spoke, expressing how many children and grandchildren the two of them shared collectively. He sported a dark brown turtleneck, layered by a caramel corduroy jacket. After I shared the synopsis of my latest fictional novel, the woman confessed that I looked like a hopeless romantic. I don’t know what that person would look like, but I guess I’ll take it as a compliment. I caught a glimpse of the couple staring into each other’s eyes, and the adoration I witnessed taught me an individual is never too old and it’s never too late to fall in love.
K. Lee n can be reached at