Further down the train we can see a couple of guys hanging out the window clapping encouragement to the engine. We join them; urging the driver onwards with applause.
At the apparently relocated Serbian side of the border, a guard takes an age to check my passport, flicking through the pages like a couch potato surfing satellite television.
Passengers come and go throughout Serbia meaning that each time I wake there is a different combination of people in the compartment with me.
It’s an impressive scene though its beauty is somewhat tempered by the post-mistress in my peripheral vision cleaning out her ear with a biro.
The train conductor’s uniform appears to be a hand-me-down from a much larger conductor, meaning at least 22% of his mass is hat.
The train stops in a ravine, leaving us staring at a rock face. “Well…” says the old guy “good ride for a Geologist.”
The train leaves Seattle characteristically late, and after we’ve gone a mile or so the conductor and an engineer realise the carriage door is still open.
Finally in San Antonio, what was originally a six-hour journey has become twelve. Its 2:15am.