martes, enero 10, 2006

Amtrak: Gallup, NM

I went to sleep early, on L*'s advice. I've been texting her the whole trip, but have to cut back, because Tuesday is a teaching day.

The ipod battery is dead this morning, and I am so pokey that Jose, our snack bar attendant has already begun his break by the time I get moving. Instead, I continue on to the dining car, where I have a pretty good breakfast and several cups of coffee. They make their omelet like little packages, all wrapped up. I share a table with a LA Chicano relocating to New Mexico to be with his dad, and a Kansas rancher with a whole lotta twang. Of course I am tempted to ask him if he's seen Brokeback Mountain but of course I resist this impulse.

Even though I'm the last one to join the table and the last one to finish eating, I am the first to excuse myself from the table.

I take my craft bag with me to the observation car, where I am almost through with a beanie that I've been knitting for the little guy. He comes by and he tries it on. He says he doesn't really like the kind with the holes in them (open pattern--I shoulda made it bigger and used smaller needles), but the other guys he's with are very admiring. Instead he wants to know could I make him a wristband. I crochet it, because I'm faster at crochet, and the next thing I know, I'm making crochet for the whole crew. There's the little guy, whose name I think is Lxas but who's being called several nicknames involving short, since he's the youngest at 7. There's Xris and his younger brother a.k.a. Mini-Me, both moving to Michigan from Fresno. There's D-on, who has just been visiting with his moms and is now travelling back to DC. (he and his dad are seated right next to me in my assigned seat). I think I produce a total of five wristbands about 4 rows wide, and then make several chain bracelets. All the boys want to learn to crochet, but only Mini-Me picks it up. he makes his own chain bracelet. One of the boys wants to keep the unfinished hat. I talk to L* on my cell-phone, and our conversation includes a summary of "Cariboo Cafe" and when she says she loves me I do that "me too, you" thing that people do in public. She can hear the boys and how funny it all is. I tell her "they're traviesos" and they vehemently deny it. Immediately afterward i am called to account by the young posse who want to know who this "friend" is, if she also lives in Oakland, if I'm married, if I've ever been married, how come, don't I like boys, et cetera. I barely escape that one. A short while later, Mini-Me is telling me about an episode of South Park and how the boys don't like their teacher because he's g-a-y. Xris tells me they read the story "Cariboo Cafe" in school, but he's really playing, just repeating back everything I said to L* about the story (His brother calls him on this and he admits it). We also have an extensive discussion on La Llorona, and a short one on the Chupacabra. Mini-Me's mom comes and takes him back to his seat because he hasn't eaten any breakfast yet.

They finally point at that we're coming into Albuquerque, so I make quick back to my seat to finish packing back up, after doling out balls of yarn and one crochet hook, which they're supposed to share. They try to talk me out of the baby blanket I completed on yesterday's train trip, but I decide to hang onto it. As I'm leaving the train they're all out on the platform. Shortie gives me back one of my knitting needles and begs another ball of yarn, and Mini-Me asks if he can have his own crochet hook, since the other is not being shared. I give him my good G-hook and tell him to take care of it.

My lovely mom awaits me in the train station. The train is in quite a bit early. It's bright and nippy in Albuquerque. We load up and hit the road for Roswell.

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