|Waiting for the Sunset Limited at Lafayette, La.|
“There is no security here at night after 10:30,” she informed me. Following her gaze toward the entrance to the Transit Center, I saw what appeared to be a number of loiterers. I felt a little uneasy in this parking lot at 11:30 a.m.
“These trains are late a lot, and sometimes they are up to 16 or more hours late and come in here in the middle of the night,” she continued.
“What about parking garages?” I asked. “Are there any close by?”
“They’re too far away to carry your luggage,” she answered. “And this not a safe area at night.”
“Are the taxis here at night?”
“No.” she replied. “And if you call one, they may or may not show up. So many times, bus passengers have called a taxi, thinking their ride wasn’t going to show up. Then their ride gets here before the taxi, and the taxi driver is left high and dry. And if they do come, it could be an hour after you call. You can’t depend on them at night.”
After driving more than 700 miles from our home in Tennessee, my husband, 15-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter had just arrived at the Transit Center in Lafayette, La., to board a train for our first long distance Amtak trip. This was an unstaffed station that only opened for about an hour for departures and arrivals. We had just gotten into town after spending the previous night with friends near Laurel, Miss. We still had about three hours to wait for the train.
We were expecting adventure on the trip but not before boarding the train.