West of the Mississippi now, and I wish I could take a picture for you, internets, of how beautiful it is, gliding alongside its gently lapped banks, sometimes behind a few trees, sometimes close enough to see the lapping happen, but part of what is so beautiful is that crepuscular, almost-not light that is too little for a digital camera.
The trip is going well. The Bean is asleep at the other end of the bunk, his guys curled around him. Except for an hour or two this morning and about fifteen minutes of tonight, when I dearly wished for another set of hands or at least a series of very strong drinks, it has been a pleasure so far.
I’ve packed about a million toys, but the Bean has mostly been happy to stare out the window, pointing out trees and birds and especially CARS!, or to walk the narrow hallways. (If you can swing the time and money (sometimes cheaper than flying, sometimes not), i emphatically recommend sleeper cars as a method of travel with young children.)
We had a few hours in Chicago — one of the benefits of train travel is that layovers occur downtown, where one can actually do something — so I walked to Millenium Park, about a mile from the station, while the Bean slept on my back, and visited one of my favorite gardens, which I haven’t seen in its summer fullness in several years.
He woke up in time for a photo op with his namesake.
He made it very clear that he wanted to walk, but I was worried about making it back to the station in time if we lingered long in the park. I told him he could walk on the sidewalks if he held my hand and let me carry him across the intersections, and that’s what we did. I figured I’d get him back in the carrier sooner or later, but in fact, this child who two months ago couldn’t walk at all walked the whole way back, and much faster than the average tourist we saw.