One of my favorite movies is The Harvey Girls about the waitresses in the Harvey Houses that cropped up around railways. In one of the earliest scenes the heroine, played by Judy Garland, emerges from the train looking fresh faced and smiling. She begins to sing of the wonderful trip and how refreshed she feels whilst galavanting around in a very charming way. Soon all of the passengers have joined her and they are all dancing and singing, much like the hamsters in the famed Hamster Dance.
Now, if I’m not mistaken (and surely I’m not) she jumped off a train after having ridden from Ohio to New Mexico and said “What a lovely trip, I’m feeling so fresh and alive.”
I feel it is necessary for me at this point to make an editorial comment. That comment is:
I recently took a comparatively small nine hour trip on a bus and I must say that when you get off, not only do you not feel fresh or alive but you most certainly do not feel in the mood to leap about like an abnormally musically inclined gazelle!
Perhaps there is a difference though. Perhaps trains are infinitely more comfortable than buses, the distance between Ohio and Flagstaff is much less stressful or maybe, just maybe, in a trip that takes more than nine hours there is a strange Twilight Zone effect and the world is perfect (much like Walgreen’s).
I think it’s a lie. I think it’s a musical which means, like all musicals, it’s fiction, everyone knows the same songs because it was planned that way and no one ever looks tired when they emerge from the train laden with three bags and a pillow. Or perhaps it’s part of a bigger plan that we have yet to realize.
Oh come on. This is an old movie! We’d have been informed of any major conspiracies by now!