Sorry for the radio silence. The trip has met it’s end in Carlsbad California. After traveling south out of Portland, east over to Sacramento, and finally through the Central Valley our train hit the coast. The beauty of this final stretch of track inspires a somber reflection on the distance I have come. Over 120 hours of total train time spanning 15 days. I have called these trains my temporary home. They brought me to family and friends, showed me stunning landscapes, and let me completely relax the entire time. I feel indebted to have had such an amazing experience and not had to lift a finger to get where I’m going.
I’m picked up in Los Angeles at around 9 pm tired and dirty. We drive the I-5 the rest of the way to Carlsbad. Highway just isn’t the same, the personality is gone. Instead of meandering across the rolling hills we eat the pavement like there is someplace else we would rather be. That is part of the allure of train travel. The entire time I spent in transit I never felt I had to be anywhere or had to do anything. I could sit in peaceful bliss and read a book, or just kick back and watch the trees pass by if I so desired. There is nowhere to go but the dining car, nothing to be but free.
This will not be the last train I ride. With all the miles I covered there are still plenty left unseen. With all the beers I drank there are more out there to try. My goal for the ride was to drink good beer with good people in every city I went. That was definitely accomplished. I had fantastic pale ale in Chicago, Geuze beer and French cheese in DC, pilsner and Helles in Florida, and of course an IPA in Portland. But just think of all the cities I missed. Beer Meccas like Denver, New Orleans, and San Antonio. I haven’t yet enjoyed an ancient ale in Delaware or an irish stout in Green Bay. There is much more rail to explore and plenty of time to get there. The Brewtrain has come in to station but this is by no means the final destination