Chicago to Pittsburgh, Capitol Limited, Train No. 30
Traveling from Chicago’s Union Station to Pittsburgh I board the Capitol Limited, scheduled to leave at 6:40pm. And it does. I find my assigned seat, number 45, near a window and settle in. My seatmate is eating a raspberry colored applesauce with a plastic spoon. A white cap covers her head and ties beneath her chin. A long apron dress reaches her black shoes. She appears to be in her early 30s. Wire rim glasses balance on her slightly pointed nose. Faint pink cheeks complement her pale complexion. She reminds me of a young Meryl Streep. She is not wearing a wedding ring, an observation I am keen on since having removed mine just days ago. I stick to traveler questions as we begin talking.
“Where are you coming from?” I ask her.
“California. We’ve been on the train since Monday,” she says politely. It is Thursday.
“What were you doing in California?”
“Well,” she hesitates and turns her head to the elderly couple sitting across the aisle from us. “My father needed a surgery. We don’t have health insurance. This was the best way.”Continue reading