The Railroad Lady by Jimmy Buffet


Is there among you a distinguished crowd of Member, a kind soul that would enlighten me about the meaning of some parts of the lyrics in this song?

Although French, I don’t eat frog legs but I’m very fond of American Country Music.

Thank you for letting me know if I can be more specific about what escapes my understanding, in my next email.

Au revoir,

Henri Sommer

In broad strokes, it’s the story of a lady who has, for most of her life, used her looks to get by with travellers and railroad employees (it’s not clear just how “shady” she is, it’s possible she is a prostitue or a con-artist/hustler of some sort). However, as she ages, her looks have faded, as has the prestige of rail travel. Not only is she past her peak in terms of attractiveness, the American railroad system is decaying due to the rise of other options for travel and communication, as well as mismanagement. Now, she’s trying to get home to Kentucky, and having a hard time of it.

If you have a specific part that you’re curious about, post it, but be careful, as the mods don’t take kindly to postings of whole songs.

You might also want to request that this be moved to the “cafe society” forum. It will get more attention from music buffs.

It may also get moved there without your request. (the mods occaisionally re-direct these threads for housekeeping reasons)


OK, you twisted my arm enough. I’ll move it. Cafe Society it is.

Welcome Henri! Enjoy your stay.