Photo: New York Penn Station, Main Floor
Amtrak scheduled a comfortable connection, about an hour and a half, between the Crescent's arrival and the departure of Train #88, the Northeast Regional. I was glad for time to explore Penn Station and check out facilities available to Amtrak's coach class passengers. I had seen the Acela Lounge for first class passengers on the trip south with Mom.
Photo: Directly across from the elevator on the main floor of Penn Station, a welcome sight - Dunkin' Donuts!
Photo: Entrance (on right) to Amtrak's passenger lounge for coach travelers
Photo: Arrival and departure information posted inside passenger lounge
Photo: Amtrak's coach class passenger lounge, roped off from the Red Cap service area; and from passenger lounges for (1) passengers with disabilities, (2) groups traveling together, and (3) others needing assistance getting to and from trains
Photo: Curtains gives lounge users visual relief from the hundreds of people in transit, many shopping in NYP station stores
Photo: Power sources for travelers with electronics in Amtrak's coach passenger lounge at NYP look dated
Photo: TTY service in Amtrak's coach passenger lounge at NYP
Photo: Video screen (left) features travel and safety information for passengers; portable wheelchairs (right) are available inside Amtrak's coach passenger lounge
Photo: Exit from Amtrak's coach passenger lounge at NYP; turn right to find restrooms at the back of the Main Floor
The 2:00PM Northeast Regional train was running 40 minutes late, which meant Train #88, the 3:00PM Northeast Regional, would be late too. I had plenty of time to pick up the new Amtrak System Timetable from the Customer Service office. The Blonde From Bakersfield's "Dream Book."
Photo: Amtrak System Timetable available free in the Customer Service office at NYP
Photo: Northeast Regional Route Map (Courtesy of Amtrak.com)
I boarded Train #88 around 3:45PM with a carry-out lunch, knowing I would miss the 8:15PM bus connection in Boston.
Photo: Leaving NYP aboard the Northeast Regional, Train #88
The trip from New York to Boston was uneventful. I enjoyed my late lunch in peace while listening to an audio book.
Photo: The Crescent at the Boston South Station
By the time Train #88 reached Boston, the Plymouth and Brockton office in South Station Bus Terminal was closed. After a momentary panic over whether I had enough cash to buy a ticket to the Cape, I saw a sign that referred P&B customers to the Greyhound desk.
Photo: Plymouth and Brockton office at the Boston South Station Bus Terminal
The Greyhound representative said P&B buses would accept tickets purchased at the Greyhound kiosk. Whew! I could use a credit card.
Photo: Kiosk at the Greyhound office in Boston South Station Bus Terminal. Plymouth and Brockton buses accept Greyhound tickets purchased here.
Ticket in hand, I headed for Gate #18 to wait for the 9:45PM bus to Hyannis. A familiar panhandler was trying to get money from a lady sitting at the gate. The panhandler had changed her story since the last time I saw her. Instead of claiming to be a mother with two small children who needed to rent a room for the night because the local shelter would not accept children, she claimed to be a woman alone, fearful of sleeping on the street, needing money for a different shelter than the one she usually stayed in because that one had closed, and on and on. The lady asked the panhandler a number of questions, after remarking about the girl's glassy eyes. The panhandler said she had been in a bad accident and had broken nine bones, and on and on - but she wasn't going to use the money for drugs . . . To my amazement, the lady gave her some cash. The panhandler didn't bother to ask me for a handout.
Photo: Gate 18 inside Boston South Station Bus Terminal
The P&B bus arrived on time. The ride was comfortable. I sat next to a woman who had been visiting museums in New York City for the weekend. She made interesting conversation.
The bus dropped me off at 11:20PM, just over 27 hours after I left Atlanta. I was overjoyed to see John.
Photo: Plymouth and Brockton bus at Barnstable stop