Trains

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For the past 3 weeks trains have been my enemy. It was an unexpected aspect of my journey but I now despise trains, the horn sound, and the screeching of the carts when they pass by. (The sound is similar to a ironing board opening…but just louder and longer.)

Needless to say, trains make awful noise.

The outdoor shelter I sleep at most nights is located between 2 merging train tracks. (I literally sleep about 50 feet away from the tracks.) There is one track on the left side of the shelter and one on the right. You could not get any closer unless you slept on the tracks!

The trains come every 30-60 minutes all night long. In all directions. So it can get quite noisy. Have I mentioned that?

When traveling near the shelter the trains have to blow their horns often and for a long period of time because many of the homeless citizens hang out on the tracks and cause great danger. Since the shelter opened there has been more than one instance where someone was hit and killed by the train. The last being on Christmas Day. It’s quite a problem regardless of the noise pollution.

I wake up (along with most homeless residents) every time a train passes by the shelter. The horn sound is so loud you just fly off your mat when the train goes by and the conductor lays on the horn. It feels like the Rapture comes every 30 mins at the shelter. But I keep being left behind.

Ironically, for our church youth group’s Spring Break trip, we decided to take the Amtrak train from San Antonio to St. Louis. (The same train that passes by the shelter every night at 9:30pm.)

It’s funny. In just one day I went from hating that train to passenger on the train!

One thing remained. The noise. The horn went off all night. And the screeching wouldn’t stop. But it was good to be inside the train and be with my students. We were in this together! (Along with Taddy, Debbie, and Laurie)

I guess I am connected to Trains this Lenten season.

If you can’t beat them. Join them.

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