Memory: Meeting the Ship
My father was a Merchant Mariner who sailed from Galveston on the U.S,S. Stella Lykes. He usually departed from and returned to Galveston. But sometimes the ship would return to New Orleans and my mother and I would meet the ship in New Orleans. Since New Orleans was where his family lived, it would be a time to visit all the Aunts and Uncles and cousins. But that was not the best part. The best part was the trip to New Orleans on the overnight train. Now that my friends was adventure!
We took a taxi to the train station. I had a little yellow overnight case with a brown deer on the front in which I carried my nightgown and a few other things. I felt so important at the train station. I was helped up the big steps onto the train by a porter. I had to sit on my overnight bag to get a good view out the window. I was not frightened at all, just very excited. I remember the dining car but I don't recall if we ate or not. What I remember so well is the sleeping arrangements. The porter pulled the bed right down from overhead! I was astonished! Who would have guessed there was a bed up there!?! I loved the clickety clack sound of the train on the track and the gentle swaying motion. I must have slept because the next thing I knew, we were getting up and dressed and coming into New Orleans. Time to visit Aunt Beulah and Uncle Edwin and cousin Joan and Grandma. I don't think I went to see the ship but I do remember my father coming in with a big doll. (I named her Wanda but I can't imagine why because I knew no one with that name.)
We must have taken the train back to Galveston but I don't remember that so well as the trip to New Orleans with those remarkable beds overhead.