Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Riding The Train They Call The City Of New Orleans From Chicago To New Orleans In Late Feb. Or Early March Of 1965 We Left Chicago In A Blizzard And Arrived The Next Day In New Orleans To A Warm And Sunny Day With The Azaleas In Bloom

When we were walking to the train station in Chicago I spotted this Ace Of Hearts frozen in the snow and ice on the sidewalk in Chicago. Too bad it is not in color. That red heart gleamed up right through the ice.
A heart frozen in the ice of Chicago.
We were headed for the warmer climes of New Orleans.
Click to enlarge the photos. Rachel took these photos.

It is interesting to note also that Steve Goodman wrote his song City Of New Orleans about going south from Chicago to New Orleans not north from New Orleans to Chicago.

I will say that the ride South in 1965 was exactly like he wrote in his song. Same towns, same scenes, same everything. I remember we stopped in Memphis and I saw crates of live chickens in crates made of chicken wire sitting on the loading platform.

I remember we left Chicago in late Feb. or early March of 1965. There was a blizzard going on in Chicago.
Just like there is today. Feb. 2, 2011. Well the wind was blowing just as hard. But there was not the 20 plus inches of snow they got last night and today.

The winds off Lake Michigan blew men's hats off their heads and they had to chase their hats down the streets.

Here I am looking out the window somewhere in Mississippi Or Lousiana
This is the train station in Batesville, Mississippi. The Amtrak train that goes from Chicago to New Orleans no longer goes through Batesville, Mississippi.
And here I am in Hammond, Louisiana almost to New Orleans with some flowers in my pocket.

Pictured below is the front of the train station in New Orleans. And below that is an interior photo of that train station and the nice mural that is on the wall there.

   When we got to the train station in New Orleans we no longer needed our winter coats. It was warm and springlike. Azaleas were blooming in Hammond, La. and also around Lee Circle in New Orleans.

Lee Circle in New Orleans shown in photo above.
   Azaleas blooming in Jackson Square in the French Quarter in New Orleans shown in photo above.
 We walked along St. Charles Avenue and crossed Canal Street and on into the French Quarter.
   The train we rode in 1965 was the original Illinois Central Railroad. It also had sleeping berths in the Pullman cars and a nice bar or club car.
   The link below is to the present day City of New Orleans operated by Amtrak. It includes links to the route and the menu of the dining car.