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Silver Meoteor Train 98- coach class

2/18/98 10:47- We left ontime and got good big window seats, but on this train, unlike the one coming down, has no TV's. That means we will not see a movie. It does bother me that Amtrak said all the Florida trains have movies, and this one does not. We are running pretty late, thanks to the Florida commuter rail. I know that we are in Okocheebee, FL and it is 10:53 am. We are running about 1 hour late. 2/18/98 3:55pm- The train now is running 50 minutes late. So far the train has worked out pretty good. It has made up ten minutes. The two people beind us are very nice. I went into the lounge car and played "Phase Ten" with the man. He gave me the cards to bring home. The lounge car is comfortable and I really like it. There are smoking times, but I avoid it then. and, the smoking is at one side only too, so the car does not have a smoke smell later. Besides the attendent cleans evreything after smoking time. It conists of several table with benches that are comfortable. There are large windows on the side of each table. In the middle of the car is the Cafe. The Cafe car has some good stuff, but it is over priced and can run out of the food that is popular- donuts in the morning and orange juice. The other side of the Cafe there is the smoking section. It is basiclly the same as the other half. As I look out my window from the lounge I notice there are much less palm trees. On this trip all the windows are very clear and shiny. I have seen many frieght, commuter, and Amtrak trains so far. Thanks to Tri Rail (the FL commuter rail) we are still running 50 minutes late. Tri Rail owns the track from West Palm Beach down to Miami. Tri Rail gets priority on the tracks, so we have to wait for them to go by us, which can take a lot of time. Also, we had to stop at this frieght yard (which we also did on the way down). There we just waited for ten minutes. There must be a reason for the wait. Up here in Northern Florida, there are lots of pine trees. This time we only have one diesel engine pulling our train, unlike on the way down where we had two engines. The engines are Amtrak's new diesel engines, which are faster and nicer. They are General Electric, 8 series. The one engine we have this time seams to be handling the job all right. ??. I don't know why they had two on the way down, and one on the way back. There must be less cars on this and less weight. 12/18/98 6:57 pm- We are now running 1 hour and 4 minutes late. The reason is first we had to wait for a freight train, and then there was track work being done, so we had to slowly travel. I hope we can make up the time. I have noticed that all the crossing on this east coast route have gates. All! 2/19/98 9:36 am- So far so good! Agan I had the prime rib for dinner. it was great. This peice of meat was done perfect. The sauce was great too! Pink in the center, thick and juicy. What a steak! The cheif of the dinner gave us free Kee Lime Pie because he had no cheesecake left, the item we orignally ordered. The pie was good too! We are meant to be in Newark, NJ at 9:18 am, it is now 9:37 am. I feel we will be there pretty soon. This train changes to electric and goes real fast between Washington, DC and New York. We saved time in DC. We did not stay as long as scheduled. We cutted the lateness to 30-40 minutes. I think we will be in Newark in ten minutes. I hope it is then or sooner. It is now 9:44 am nd we still are not in Newark. 2/19/98 9:54 am- We have arrived in Newark. Next stop New York City, the final stop of this train. We departed Newark at 9:59 am so that means we are running 44 minutes late. We arrived in New York 30 minutes late. Thanks Amtrak for another great trip, except for the cafe car attendent and a conducter with a last name of BREWER. Overall, THANK YOU!!