Sanctuary! I am currently thawing my frozen fingers from getting stranded at the San Juan Capistrano train station for 20 whole minutes because I mistakenly took the wrong train.
I repeat. I. Took. The. Wrong. Train.
Okay, I may be exaggerating the “stranded” part, but it felt like it!
Let’s start from the beginning…
Storytime: How I Took the Wrong Train
I was patiently waiting at my original train station in Orange County listening to music. Then, the minute the first train came along (the Metrolink train), I hopped on it without looking at a train number or name. Yikes.
I did not realize I was on a different train until I sat down and found it odd that I didn’t have a storage bin to store my bags… I also thought to myself, “Huh, why are the seats red and not blue?” Then, as the train left the station, I saw a sign that said Metrolink! Not my usual train, Amtrak. HELP!
What I Did to Control My Freak Out
Before I went into full panic mode, I told myself, Rachel, you are bamboo. Flexible and unbreakable. Don’t break down now woman!
I immediately searched where the next few stations were to check if I’m was on the right track and going in the right direction.
I made a plan to get off the next available station where Amtrak could pick me up. That station happened to be San Juan Capistrano Train Station.
So I got off the train with three other people… (something I’m not used to because usually a crowd gets off at each station)
Everyone left the station, and I was there. Alone. In the dark. In Ol’ Town San Juan Capistrano — the oldest city in Orange County… with an old cemetery and jailhouse nearby.
It’s times like this when I wish I could turn my imagination off and stop thinking about all the Filipino mythological creatures and supernatural things!
All I thought was… FML.
Finding the Brightside: Harry Potter & Europe?
I called my fiancé and talked to him until my train finally came to my saving grace.
Out of nervousness, I just talked and talked convincing myself I’m not in a scary, dark, empty place — and told myself that I was really experiencing what it’s like if I were taking trains throughout Europe. I also told myself (or at least tried telling myself) I’m in a Harry Potter movie. But then, the lamp next to me HAD TO start flickering on and off.
I immediately started walking around (away from the flickering lamp post), but eventually sat down again because the stark emptiness was too much. Then, the train fiiiiiinaaaallly came!
Safe & Sound Rachel
Anyway, I’m on the train now.
Alive, well, and with a new story to tell.
Bless my nomadic traveling heart. I love adventure, but sometimes traveling solo and going through that tonight is not fun.
Lesson Learned: I will ALWAYS check my train number and get on the correct train at the correct time. (LOL, something I should have been doing since the beginning, but oh well.)
Tip to any new travelers: Always bring a phone charger with you. You never know if you’ll get stranded at a train station, or whatever. A charged phone just brings more comfort.
Happy (and Safe!) Travels,