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The Mailbag: Feedback from our Guests
Letters - some positive, some not so positive - describing the laughter and the fears of riding the rails in these United States.

CONTACT US. We'd enjoy reading any comments you may have.


from the desk of
Pemberton Q. Cobblespot

One Deferred Maintenance Way
Nutley, NJ 07110

Dear Sir or Madam,

My wife Claudette and I just returned from a trip on Amtrek's "Pity of New Orleans." The entire experience was delightful but I especially enjoyed your new "Bourbon Street Speakeasy" lounge car. The bartender kept the liquor flowing freely and it wasn't long before I was involved in a spirited game of poker with several really nice fellows from Pennsylvania. They had been headed down to the Big Easy for an Alcoholics Anonymous convention. By the time I finished with them, those poor, dumb bastards had gambled away every dime they had. I even relieved them of their return train tickets when one of them couldn't cover a bet. The last I heard, they had to pawn their watches and thumb it back home to Altoona.

Another unexpected pleasure was your innovative "All-Aboardello." The friendly prostitutes there provided a welcome respite from the rigors of married life. I'd like to offer special praise to a young attendant named Candy Sweet, who was most accommodating and reasonably priced. She really bent over backward to make me happy. My dear wife never suspected a thing. I simply told her I'd been in the restroom the entire time I was away from our bedroom. "It must have been something I ate," I said. Can you believe she bought that line?

Yes, the whole trip reminded me of my old days back in the service. Be assured, I shall be traveling your way again.

Warmest Regards,
P. Q. Cobblespot
Princeton, Illinois

Editorial Note: We're proud of features like our Bourbon Street Speakeasy. It's nice to see that Amtrek's new emphasis on customer-friendliness has not gone unnoticed.
Office Of The Person In Charge
1 Deferred Maintenance Way
Nutley, New Jersey 07110

To Whom It May Concern,

My husband Chesterton and I spent our wedding anniversary traveling all over the country on one of Amtrek's "Expose America Fares." We wish to commend you on your wonderful service.

Although we rode many trains, one stands out. Train 37, the "Mail and Freight Express," took us from the little-known Civil War battlefield of Leaf Springs, Idaho to visit dead relatives in Breakwind, Colorado. Its derailment in the middle of a tunnel gave us a greater appreciation for the uncertainty of life itself. And, it added a touch of romance. In 48 years of marriage, I've never felt so close to my husband as when we had to trudge through stagnant puddles of water in total darkness to escape. We'll treasure that memory for years!

We also observed that train travel provides such a different perspective. As our train rolled past mile after mile of squalid shacks and burnt-out tenement buildings, we realized just how good we have it in our modest but tidy little home here in Woonsocket. I've often chided my husband about our old appliances and furniture, but I saw many refrigerators and dinette sets strewn along the tracks that were nowhere near as nice as what we own. Many thanks for the wonderful memories.

Velveeta Cheeseworth
Woonsocket, RI

Editorial Note: Happily, we can respond that Mrs. Cheeseworth's trip was not unusual. Many of our routes offer unique scenery and experiences.
Attn: Woodward P. Sanguine, President
1 Deferred Maintenance Way
Nutley, New Jersey 07110

My Dear Mr. Sanguine,

I recently returned from one of your "land cruises." One expects to arrive late when traveling by train, but arriving 3-1/2 DAYS late was a bit much, especially considering we traveled only between Baltimore and New York. Because of YOU, I missed the once a year sale of fur-lined feather boas at Bloomies. What are YOU going to do about this? (By the way, I no longer have my reservation number because the cocktail napkin that the ticket was written on was lost in the latrine on train #127. I was using the restroom marked "Handicapped," if that helps.)

On a positive note, the pretzels that you are famous for were almost fresh, and I lost only one tooth this time. It's nice to see that some aspects of your service have improved. I also noticed fewer flies this time. And, although some might dispute this, I find the vermin a nice touch. They're delightful little furry traveling companions - very friendly - I was only bitten twice this time.

J. Monroe Bladder III
West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania 19428

Editorial Note: In compensation for his hardship, we sent Mr. Bladder a deluxe collector's tin of our famous pretzels.

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