Off To The Races!

Amtrak Adventure 2/31 (about October 1st, 2021)

Yesterday, we packed up and headed east from Seattle!

The first task was to load up our 40L backpacks (and double-, and triple-check that we have everything). Mattea & I are each carrying:

  • enough clothes for 6 nights (and varied situations),

  • hygiene equipment (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, etc),

  • sleeping equipment (pillow, blanket, earplugs, sleep mask),

  • our electronics (laptop, phone, smartwatch, and cords),

  • a paper journal,

  • and a water bottle.

  • (I also have a good camera, and Mattea also has an iPad.)

It’s a pretty minimal setup, but we hope it’ll do; we decided to err on the side of packing light and opting to buy more in Chicago, rather than bringing too much and having to send a box home with unused stuff.

Once we were packed, we waited for Mattea’s father to get home from work, then said goodbye to the in-laws—and they drove us to my parents’ house to say goodbye to them (and get a ride to the train station).

While we were there waiting for my mother to get home from work, Mattea had a realization. My hair was getting kind of long… and surely after a month of travel it’ll have gone completely to seed! But there was hope: a haircutting kit under the sink.

Before I knew it—and less than an hour before we had to be on the train—I was getting shorn on the deck. 🤷‍♂️

And suddenly we were in Edmonds, standing on the platform, waiting.

A horn sounded; our train pulled in; we climbed aboard; and now, heading steadily East, our latest adventure has really begun!

At our first “fresh air” (or “smoking,” depending on the conductor) break in Wenatchee, we got to meet up with my maternal grandparents! It was great to chat with them for 10 minutes; seeing people all over the country will really be lovely.

(All three maternal figures—both moms and my grandma—sent us off with a bag of snacks. At this rate we’ll have more bags than clothes at the end of the trip! 😊)


To follow along with our monthlong journey, sign up for daily update emails here:


Leave a comment