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Notes from a Cross-Country Travel Disaster

A few years ago, when my brother graduated from high school, I began what had become my regular trek across the country from Seattle to Ithaca, dressed arrogantly in nothing more than a t-shirt, flip flips and capris.

Then came Chicago O’Hare and tornadoes. What could possibly go wrong?

In this travel horror story, Notes from a Cross-Country Travel Disaster, up on my new favorite site, Fathom, I recount what it’s like to be a travel zombie, imparting a few key tips like, “Use your waterproof backpack cover as a blanket when the air conditioning on the train is too cold” and “ALWAYS BRING SOCKS IN YOUR CARRYON.”

Watch as your intrepid protagonist overcomes obstacles, tries to keep her cool with airline representatives, and learns a little something about what it means to love.

Just kidding about that last part. Enjoy, and thanks for reading!

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About leahkaminsky

Leah Kaminsky is a writing consultant and writer from Austin, TX. She received her MFA in Fiction Writing from the University of Washington in 2009. As a freelance writer, she has covered a variety of topics ranging from "This Is Why You Should Buy This Particular Stapler" to "How To Throw a Party P Diddy Style." Her fiction writing is alternatively absurd and lyrical, but not often at once. If you're looking for Leah Kaminsky, the writer/doctor from Australia, I am sadly lacking the accent and the med degree (sorry mom). Check out her wonderful writing at

2 responses »

  1. When I was looking for work after graduation, I had to go to NYC for a few interviews. On the return trip for one interview (I didn’t get the job), I took the train from Penn Station back up to Rochester. For eight long hours, I got to sit next to a guy who somehow believed I was a strong contender to be his next girlfriend/mistress/dalliance, and my only escape was whipping out my Hello Kitty fleece blanket, tucking under it, and feigning sleep. This was before I had an iPod, so my ears were defenseless. My hopes of his getting off the train before I reached Rochester were dashed when he told me he was going to Buffalo.

    I really felt for your train ride from hell and I applaud your determination to get to your brother’s graduation.

    • Oh, that is the WORST. I actually have a similar story coming out on the same blog about a similar kind of travel companion/leach. You poor thing! I’m glad you survived and that you like the piece. :-)


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