“You don’t take a vacation, vacation takes you”. Such accurate words to describe my experience during my travels away from home July second through the seventeenth.
I left my home in Tonopah, Arizona, which I would be away from for two weeks, on the afternoon of the second with my grandmother, with whom I would be traveling for the first leg of my trip.
We stayed at her home for the evening, and the following morning, we started out on the Interstate 10, bound for Lordsburg. After a brief stop in Wilcox for lunch, we arrived in Lordsburg, where we launched fireworks after dinner.
â–º QUARTER FINALIST 2012 TEEN TRAVEL WRITING SCHOLARSHIP
Although I enjoyed launching fireworks on the third, the 4th was more eventful, with colorful, whistling, popping pyrotechnics announcing themselves throughout the entire town until midnight.
The following morning was the last one I would have in the small, dusty town of Lordsburg on my trip, as I would be boarding an Amtrak train for El Paso. We had breakfast within sight of the train “station”, which consisted of, in totality, a 15’x10’ gray concrete slab and a silver colored sign at an intersection. While waiting for the train we spoke with a local storeowner who informed us that the Lordsburg Amtrak was notorious for being late.
Forty-five minutes after the scheduled boarding time, the silver train rolled into the station. After saying goodbye to my grandmother, I boarded the coach car and headed up into my seat. After storing my pack and fiddle above my head in the luggage compartment, I took my window seat. A man with brown beard and hair sat down next to me. He and I exchanged courtesy greetings and we were on our way.
The train ride itself was smooth and we moved speedily. 20 minutes out of El Paso, the man next to me got up and left. We approached the station right along the US- Mexico border. ½ a mile from the station, we had to stop, as the station could not accommodate two trains at once. While we were waiting, an intoxicated individual had jumped off the train, and orders had been given that no trains should move until he had been located.
After two hours of waiting, making this a four-hour stay on the train, we were finally allowed to pull into the station. I grabbed my fiddle and backpack and walked to the station where my grandparents were waiting. I spent the next two days visiting with them. On my last day there, for breakfast my aunt Susie and cousin Carol-Anne visited. It was at this time that my Aunt, who, for the reader’s knowledge, is a bartender, started talking about a man whom she served as complaining about being charged an extra $100 for his ticket, as he was drunk the last time he was on the train. He matched the description of the man who had sat next to me.
After leaving El-Paso by Plane, I arrived in Dallas, where, after visiting with my uncle and aunt, I was supposed to ride a Greyhound bus to Springfield, MO. After having followed directions that put us 13 blocks from the station, I wound up flying out of DFW for Springfield.
After staying in MO for 6 days, during which I butchered a bull, played my fiddle with family who also played instruments, I returned home by plane. After the events that affected me, which were beyond my control, the words that my Aunt had spoken rung true: “You don’t take a vacation, vacation takes you.”
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