Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Riding the rails

Spent much of today on trains. The el to Amtrak this morning, Amtrak back home tonight. I enjoy the train, especially now that the wifi is so steady, but it was a long-ass day.

The client invited us down to meet their lawyers and listen to a presentation on regulations in financial services marketing. It wasn't scintillating, but it is relevant to my job and therefore it held my interest. Coming back, I treated myself to business class.

It's quieter in business class, with most people either snoozing or doing paper work, as opposed to coach, where travelers tend to blab and move around more. This gave me the opportunity to eavesdrop on the woman sitting across the aisle from me.

She is a nurse from (I'm guessing) St. Louis who is in Chicago for some kind of training this week. She's staying at the Silver Smith, which is a very, very nice hotel. She is, I guess, a few years older than I am. I gleaned all this from the call I heard her make to her mother, who, it seems, is recovering from some rather serious illness. Her mom was interested in the minutiae of her daughter's life, which is how I learned that she's a nurse, she did rounds this morning, and had a toasted cheese sandwich for lunch before boarding the train.

The daughter complained about her sister's Christmas card, telling her mother that Sis shouldn't have published their mother's health struggles. Then she updated her mom about her pets and ... oh, yeah! ... her husband.

It was the kind of call you could tell this dutiful daughter made regularly to her mother.

Today would have been my own mother's birthday. I miss being able to make those calls.




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