Tag Archives: family

The Benefits of Traveling by Train

The summer is quickly approaching, and with the summer comes family vacation time.  Many families will use the summer months to strengthen their family bond by participating in a host of family vacations. Some families plan all year so that they are able to make the most of the vacation time that they will spend together.  Many times these family trips are planned between the months of June and August, as this is when most school-aged children have their summer vacation.

One of the primary methods of travel is by car.  Many families choose to take road trips by automobile for several reasons.  Whether it is because of the cost effectiveness, the ability to stop as desired, or the ability to plan sightseeing stops along the way; traveling by car is one of the most popular forms of travel for families.

Another popular method of travel is by airplane.  Of course this form of travel has a huge advantage for those travelers who are ready to skip all of the hoopla and just reach their destination.  Traveling by airplane is very convenient, and most destinations can be reached in a matter of a few hours.

Traveling by passenger train is probably a method that most families don’t normally consider when they plan their family vacations.  Why don’t these families generally consider this mode of travel?  Perhaps it is because they think the price of traveling by train is expensive in comparison with traveling by car.  Perhaps these families feel that traveling by train will take too long.  Maybe the thought may cross their minds that the ride will be uncomfortable.  At any rate, traveling by train is something that should be considered by any traveler who wants to sit back, relax, and ENJOY their vacation.

Think about it… No worrying about driving the speed limit; no confusion about directions; no frustration searching for the cheapest gas station; and no anguish after eating from questionable gas stations or less than savory fast food restaurants along the way.

By choosing Amtrak, passengers have many options for comfort and enjoyment. Passengers can choose to ride in the Coach section, which is quite roomy.  The seats recline, and passengers have plenty of leg room for their comfort.  If Coach is not their thing, passengers can step it up a notch, and opt for a sleeper cabin.  In this cabin, one can lounge and relax during the day, and sleep peacefully in a bunk at night.  Either way, passengers have several options, and the choice is theirs.

Regardless of the option that is chosen, passengers have the ability to walk around freely while visiting the dining car or other passenger-friendly areas of the train.  They will not have the ability to stop at every little country town they pass.  Nor will they have the ability to stop every time they pass a billboard announcing an exciting phenomena, monument, or shopping mall.  However, if reaching the final destination in style is of importance, then traveling by Amtrak may be an option.

There are many options when it comes to travel.  Of course, reaching the final destination is important, but who wants to be tired by the time they reach the resort?  Who wants to be aggravated by their family before they even reach the Family Reunion?  Shouldn’t a vacation be peaceful from start to finish??  Just a little food for thought as you make preparations for your upcoming family trips.  This year, why not try something new?  Take a ride on Amtrak and see the beauty of America- without the usual fuss.

Take the opportunity to add Amtrak to your list of options.  Gourmet dining, sightseeing from your comfortable, reclining seat, and the ability to leave the driving to someone else should all be reasons to make traveling by train another option when it comes to planning your upcoming family vacation.

Bo John’s Train

Dana Walton, Bo John's TrainHello,

My name is Dana Walton, and I am the author of “Bo John’s Train”.  I am an Educator, currently living near Atlanta, Georgia. I have taught elementary school for over twelve years in the states of Florida, Georgia, and Maryland.  I have also taught in the United Arab Emirates in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.  I have one son, Ryan, and he is nine years old.  In my spare time, I enjoy reading, traveling, bowling, going to the movies, shopping, and clipping coupons.

I am so excited to have the opportunity to share this book with the world.  “Bo John’s Train” is about a train engineer and the way he has touched the people of a small townMy father, Robert Lee Walton Jr., was the inspiration for this book.  It seemed as if everyone in our town knew him.  His nickname was Bo John.  He was an engineer for CSX Transportation. He actually drove trains! I have some great memories of my father wearing his blue overalls, red and white handkerchief around his neck, and blue and white striped conductor’s hat.

bo john's train, bo john, trains, Dana Walton

Bo John (my dad and inspiration for my book)

I wrote this book as a tribute to my father.  He had such a positive impact on the lives he touched.  He had such a huge smile and he was always smiling.  He was a happy person and fun to be around. I remember the jokes he told and the many stories he shared about working on the railroad.  Our house was not too far from the railroad tracks, and he would always blow the train whistle as he passed our house.  When we were little, my mom would take my sister and I to see our dad as he passed by driving the train.  We would sit in the car and wait for the train to pass by.  My Dad would lean out the engine window and wave at us as the train roared by.  Sometimes he would tip his blue and white striped conductor’s hat as he rode on past the railroad crossing.  Although I miss him every day, I can still smile as I reminisce about my childhood and the love he had for his family, his car, and his freight train.

In December 2005, my father passed away after his battle with cancer.  This was a very difficult time for my family.  We still think about him all the time.  At family gatherings, people still talk about the jokes and funny stories he would share.  Bo John’s Train is my way of paying tribute to the man who is directly responsible for making me into the woman I am today.  He taught me how to be independent and how to love others.  He was a strong believer in education and I know that he would be proud of all of my accomplishments.  I also know that he would be proud to be the main character in “Bo John’s Train”.  Whenever I hear a train whistle, I think of him.  After reading this book, I hope you will too.