I Love Trains, Especially French Ones

© 2005 Romain Martin

Ever since I was a little boy, I’ve been a fan of trains and railroads. Maybe it was my first electric train set that did it but, like lots of little kids, I fell in love with this mode of transportation that glides along iron rails stretching off  into the horizon. Growing up in the rural South, I often watched trains passing in front of me at railroad crossings, but it would take a long time before I’d ever ride on one. In fact, I’d been flying for years before I ever took my first train ride. It was in Germany in 1992, and I still remember the novelty of walking into a station and buying a ticket on the spot for a train to take me to another town about half an hour away. There was something very charming about that moment, and it would mark rail travel — in my mind — as something quintessentially European. Later on, working in the DC office of a New York law firm, I got a lot of experience riding the rails between Union Station and Penn Station. I had a few travel adventures on the rails between DC and South Carolina, too (when Amtrak‘s fares were low enough to warrant an 8-hour roll instead of a 50-minute flight), but it wasn’t until my return to Europe in 2009 that my love affair with trains really blossomed. Why? Because for the first time in my life, I was living in a place where I could take a train to almost anywhere — whether 500 miles away or only 5. Continue reading I Love Trains, Especially French Ones