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Around the World in 80 Days

Day 68: 1 December

Michael Palin - Around the World in 80 DaysChristmas carols sound from somewhere, and I realise that I want to be back home. As if to acknowledge the wish, I find a bar serving Sam Smith's beer from my home county. A pint, a bowl of clam chowder, and a last lungful of the cold, dry, reviving air before heading back down to the real world.

Glenwood Springs station could be out of the Scottish Highlands. Rough-hewn stone, overhanging eaves and a feeling of having been nearly glamorous. The same could be said of The California Zephyr. 'A soft gentle breeze' as defined in the dictionary, and certainly it's no hurricane today. An hour passes and still no sign. A massive goods train goes by, quite possibly the longest train I've ever seen. Seven diesels of the Rio Grande and Southern Pacific Railroads hauling one and a quarter miles of trucks. The Zephyr arrives one and a half hours late and it's getting dark as we wind into the canyon, the tips of whose walls are caught by the last rays of a golden sunset and glow like the points of a crown.

All that's needed to enjoy it is sight and silence. But the train manager has other plans.

'I've collected all the Trivia sheets. Mrs Dorothy Connelly, you got all your questions wrong. I'd like to meet you. You're the person who got all their questions wrong!'

Pause.
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PALIN'S GUIDES

  • Series: Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day: 68
  • Date: 1 December
  • Country/sea: USA
  • Place: Glenwood Springs - Colorado
  • Book page no: 228

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