Tuesday, March 15, 2005

San Francisco

Just when I thought I was getting over jet-lag, taking the train from Seattle to SF knocked me back into the old time zone again. It was a productive train ride though - studied a lot of medical stuff for my recertification exam which I take on Weds.

It was a beautiful day for a train ride, could see all the giants of the cascades, first Mt. Rainier peaking its head out over the foothills, factories, subdivisions and broad fields of daffodils and tulips. The south end of Puget Sound was clear, a little choppy, a good day for the sail boats out there.

I was joined by a young man who got on at Portland. I got a little bit of a weird vibe but when he introduced himself, I retreated into my book. He just got back from doing missionary work in SE Asia for a particular better-not-named group. Because of the length of the train ride, I didn't get into it with him - Buddhism and animism are the religions in the region. Hands off! I think converting the 'ignorant masses' to the better path would be much better put to use if it were Buddhist missionaries working in the US. Enough said. I read many chapters in my medical text while he read the Bible.

I did have a pleasant dinner with two women about my age. When you sit in the dining car, you sit at the next open spot in a table until it fills up. So by luck, the two women were very interested in the work I've been doing and knew a lot about Asia already. I tend to be very quiet about my work because people usually change the subject quickly; I imagine that they are uncomfortable that what I might say would be difficult to hear. Since I usually don't say much, I was surprised and pleased that my dinner companions were so interested. The dinner restored a little bit of my faith in Americans.

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