Final Stop

Here we are, the final stop on our trek across the United States. We arrived back in Vancouver yesterday, amidst a small bit of fanfare (balloons were involved) as we disembarked from our last train journey – the 25 minute ride from Vancouver to Coquitlam.

It’s difficult to describe the emotions in just a few sentences; I think I’ll write more about that another time. Suffice it to say that we’re all happy and sad at the same time. Happy that we can finally unpack and not move on again after a few days; happy to see family and friends again; sad that our epic journey is over; sad that we won’t be going back to Bristol again.

Pacific northwest coastline

Pacific northwest coastline

The last leg of our trip started in Portland on Thursday morning. We left early and took the train to Seattle; a very pleasant three hour trip. Seattle is a very cosmopolitan city with a lot going for it, but I found a very noticeable distinction between it and Portland. Where Portland feels clean, friendly, and new, Seattle feels much more edgy and older. It’s probably an unfair comparison, as it’s based on my own limited observations of the areas we were staying in, but nevertheless that’s what it felt like.

Lunch at the Crab Pot

Lunch at the Crab Pot

We stayed in Seattle just for one night, as the Vancouver train leaves early the next morning. We had time to eat at our favourite Seattle restaurant, the Crab Pot, where they provide you with a bucket of seafood, bibs, and mallets. Messy eating is strongly encouraged. In the evening I met up with my friend Brian from Vancouver, who was coming down anyway to see a gig at the fantastically-named Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley. Lee Ritenour and Dave Grushin were featured, along with Dave Weckl and Melvin Davis. If you’re at all into jazz (and who isn’t?), it was excellent entertainment.

Our final morning

Our final morning

The next morning we left Seattle at 7:45 on the final leg of our Amtrak adventure. The train goes past some fantastic scenery along the pacific coast until we reached Vancouver (where it was delayed by a freight train for 50 minutes before finally pulling into the station). A quick check through customs and we were back in familiar territory.

We had a bit of time to kill so naturally we had sushi for lunch, and then we boarded the Westcoast Express commuter train to head to Coquitlam, where my parents live. Our house isn’t quite ready for us to move in yet, so we’re staying with my parents for a few days.

Final Stop: Coquitlam, BC

Last Stop: Coquitlam, BC

And that’s the end. I appreciate everyone who has taken time to read our blog entries, and thanks to all of you who added comments – it’s great to hear from people along the way. I’ll be continuing to post blog entries every so often as we settle back into life in Canada. In the meantime I can highly recommend the train for a travelling holiday – we had a great experience and would certainly do it again.

Thanks for reading!

— Mike

About Mike

We went on a trip around the USA as we headed back from England to Canada. Using this account we tracked our progress and published entries throughout our trip. Enjoy!
This entry was posted in USA 2011 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Final Stop

  1. Erin says:

    It has been fun to follow your journey! Hope you enjoy getting settled back into your home. Hope we can see you all soon!

  2. Karen Jepson says:

    Hi Family Goetz, Congratulations on reaching the end of your epic trip. Been thinking of you back here in Bristol and enjoying your blog. Will miss you when term starts next week. Wanted to let you know we have our visa’s for Australia, James gone today Ella, Joe and I going 1st week in Oct.

  3. Mark says:

    This morning I thought, “ooh, it’d be nice to catch up on how the Goetzes are doing on their journey, and here I am with some time to catch up,” only to realise you’ve finished! Welcome home! 😉

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