Monday, December 29, 2008

planes, trains, and automobiles

if you're anything like me, you're broke with time on your hands. that means one thing and one thing only - you're taking the train home from chicago next week. no delays at midway or o'hare. no airport security. no beverage and peanuts. no sir. you're dedicating 1/2 day to amtrak. and inexplicably happy about it.

here's the thing. i love to move; on foot or buckled into a boeing 747, i dig traveling. i'm constantly curious about how people get from here to there - which modes are most thrilling? relaxing? social? satisfying? efficient?

lately i've been thinking about trains. they seem classy to me. and a bit edgy. occasionally, flammable. and better for the environment than planes?

i realized i wasn't sure. in fact, there's a lot i don't know about trains. so i did a little research. according to this 2007 editorial, when you consider a variety of factors from cost to style points, trains beat out cars and planes for regional u.s. travel. this 2008 new york times article discusses the rising popularity of the eurostar based on its green advantage over planes. this blog tracks a student's cross-country amtrak tour.

out six hours and $20, i'll let you know what i think next week.


Michelle said...

Have a fun ride. I remember taking the train from Jersey to New York as a young girl, but that was always just a quick trip. Jon and I actually looked into taking a train out to Jersey this summer to visit family but the thought of a 20 plus hour trip with a 9 month old and 2 year old just didn't sound appealing (it's very hard to get anywhere east from Detroit by train, very sad if you ask me).

The Butler Family said...

We just got back from Chicago. Took the train both ways. My conclusion is that it would probably be fun alone or with another adult. With a child--no fun at all! I hope you enjoy your trip :)

johnny said...

hmmm...i'm beginning to feel nervous...