Unlike other Freewrites where I did them on my computer, this one is a direct transcription of the free-writing that I did on my Amtrak journey from Chicago to Lincoln. For a time reference, I started at 18:27 and ended at 18:42. (Since I wrote it by hand, there may be fewer words than my previous Freewrites.)
Standing water with rocks in a lumber yard. We have just arrived in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, as the Amtrak station is a brick house with green doors and windows. A basketball court lies just behind the building, and what appears to be a school. Both are deserted–doubly valid given the time of year and day. We roll along.
Ottumwa, Iowa is the next stop, about 45 minutes away. They won’t quote it as a “long 40 minutes” for me. The neighborhood rapidly gives way to farmland, open spaces, and industrial plants. Amidst the corn, I see not-so-healthy, yellow ferns. Or is my plant ecology in need of serious remediation?
Clouds of the day earlier have dissipated in the westbound journey. Grayness has stepped aside for baby blue. It combines well with the green of the endless fields, and exemplifies the care-free attitude that adventure ought to bring.
People enter and exit the social car. In the seats near me, some doodles I can see to my left. A husband and wife to the right, reading disparate material. The sun shining through the windows, but not in a terribly blinding fashion.
A frontage road, all cracked up, has decided to follow us. It gets me thinking, I have never been on a train in Nebraska. Will I be able to see the end of the journey? Will it be too dark?
Lockridge. A few houses, barns, and a water tower. THIS is rural America, and it is fun to watch the scenery go by. It is amazing the nature that you miss in the city. Come nightfall, I will be able to see the stars for seemingly the first time since March of 2013. Ah–the things I miss about home…