Husband has always wanted to travel by train. With a trip to Virginia for a family wedding gave us the opportunity to finally do so. Travelling to Virginia is a long tedious drive. We have done it several times and always stopped part way through to spend the night in a hotel. Travelling by train would let us make the trip without stopping as we could sleep on the train. And taking the auto train allowed us to bring our car saving the cost of a rental car when we arrived at our destination. So, several months ago, we bought our tickets. When offered the chance to get a room with beds and a bathroom, we paid the extra fee which was so worth. We boarded in Sanford, two hours from our house and watched our car disappear into a two level enclosed car carrier. Our roomette was tiny, but with a couch that later folded into a bed, a seat, small table and bathroom so tiny that you sat on the toilet to take a shower, we had all we needed. We enjoyed watching the countryside go by crossing parts of Florida that we have never seen before. It was easy to imagine what it must have been like to be a pioneer traversing the swamps and forests on a way to a new life. While husband napped, I battled my typical urge to get to our destination with the knowledge that train travel is all about the journey. As the train lurched slowly across the state, I kept thinking that if we had left the day before when we got off work and driven until late in the night, we could have been in Virginia already. But, I decided to enjoy the trip rather than think about what might have been. Crossing between cars to get to the dining car was trickier than I expected. A bit like stepping onto the top of an escalator. Dinner was tasty though not necessarily healthy and gave us the chance to meet other passengers. About nine, our sleeping car attendant converted the couch to a bunkbed. The lower bunk was about halfway between a double bed and a twin. The upper bunk was twin sized and looked confining. Neither one of us wanted the top bunk claiming claustrophobia so we shared the lower bunk which extended right up to the sink forcing us to scoot over the bed to get to the door or the bathroom. It was humorous. For a while. Trying to share such a small bed was not easy. Nor was the lurching and shifting of the train which seemed to get worse as the train picked up steam in the long stretches of South and North Carolina. We slept fitfully. Cramping knees, unexplained noses and sudden stops with a loss of power and air conditioning (the train has a reduced power system when stopped). We found out the next morning that flash flood warnings in South Carolina cause an unexpected delay and a stop on the side of the tracks. Though we arrived much more rested in Virginia than we do after a long car trip even one punctuated with a hotel stay, I was still a bit groggy. So, when we finally made our way through horrendous Sunday afternoon traffic on the Interstates of Virginia and Maryland made worse by a huge festival in downtown Baltimore, I was exhausted. Thankfully, the Bed and Breakfast I chose off the Internet had a bed bigger than our roomette on the train! Quiet, luxurious and within walking distance of a fabulous restaurant, we are now fully recovered from our travels and ready to spend the rest of the week exploring the Chesapeake Bay region. There are a lot of ways to travel. Some fast, some slow. Some more difficult than others. Some require us to overcome fears and try something new. But, if we only focus on where we want to be, chafing from delays and impatient to be there, we miss so many pleasures and lessons that come only during the journey. You might not be looking forward to a week’s vacation today, but there will be pleasures and joys that you will miss if you are too busy to look for them. Enjoy the journey. Even if it involves some rocking and bumps in the road.