Admittedly, the Amtrak along the Sacramento to San Jose corridor is no where near as smooth a ride as in Europe but definitely a cut above the UK train system. The step up into the train would be more of an issue if there were not clearly available accessible entrance locations.
Did I mention that there are actually bicycle cars included on the trains? Not the S-Bahn version of flip up seats where you can also potentially stuff a few bikes if the traffic is light, but enough space to line up and lock dozens of bikes. Since the cars are effectively double deckers, the upper narrow corridor of single seats on each side are filled with riders, helmets, backpacks and spandex.
The other cars have wide corridors and comfortable seats. Not Southwest Trains or East Anglia where I have to turn sideways in order to get down the isles but wide enough for a wheel chair, a walker, a normally sized human or someone with a bit more mass.
Then there are the frequent placement of outlets. My computer is charging while I am writing this. And, if you hadn’t guessed by now, there is WiFi. It is not charged, it is not exactly high bandwidth but who cares? I don’t need to Skype – I just can crank though my email.
Berkeley to Davis yesterday, return today. Moving right along, this particular route is faster on the train than it would be in an automobile. Besides, I haven’t figured out yet how to safely knit and drive…..