Amtrak travelogue written by 14 year old Joshua Trower.

RE: Northeast Direct

This is the travelogue of the fourth segment of the five day Amtrak
journey Dad and I took, this segment took us from Boston to Washington
via Northeast Direct 173.

Boston-We were soon redy to go after we had ridden the commuter train
and had some breakfeast. Our train was fairly long and was being
pulled by a GP-40TC and a F-40. As we were departing the crew made
very clear that you can only sit in the dinette if you buy something!
This was no problem, we would just get a bag of chips and watch the
scenery[and trains] go by. The conductor who took our tickets was
pretty nice and very helpful.

Attleboro-For a while we were involved in a race with a commuter train
that was being put into a storage yard, we came out on top.

Providence-This city is larger then I that it would be, there are a
lot of work cars around.

I noticed that they were doing a lot of track work on this part of the
corridor, we keep passing men in yellow vests and M.O.W. veichles.

New London-This is the beginning of the Shore Line East commuter line
to New Haven, as we were leaving we passed a Providence & Worcester
R.R. freight that had locomotives on both ends.

This part of the corridor is very scenic, there are many shore line
views and beaches.

Old Saybrook-There are two men on the platform who look like they just
escaped from prison, I mean it! The look like there wearing the same
outfit inmates wear.

New Haven-This is were they will change to an electric locomotive
since we just picked up the overhead catenary, this is also a "smoke
stop" so we walked on to the platform to stratch our legs. They made
the change very fast and we were soon on our way. I noticed that we
also had a new train crew.

In the dinette-The dinette car attendant is realy pretty nice and is
from around the area we live in. He said he had gone to chef school
and when he graduated, found an opening at Amtrak. The woman sitting
across from us works for Amtrak as a person who looks for and hires
people to be M.O.W. officials. Every 10-15 minutes we pass a
Metro-North commuter train.

Entrance to New York-The entrance into New York is very impressive, we
crossed over the massive Hell Gate Bridge and also got a nice view of
Amtraks Sunnyside yard, in the distance you can see the El trains.

New York-A lot of buisness people with laptops and celluler phones got
on here, we our not real big fans of the station because there is no
good place to watch trains move in and out. Dad is getting very
excited, we have family who live in New Jersy who we would visit quite
often, and when we would visit we would always watch trains along the
corridor.

Metropark-We ran a little late getting into the station because we
were stopped at a signal.

New Brunswick-We are not stopping here but I was born in this town,
there is an impressive crossing of the Raritan river here.

Trenton-An Amtrak pulled in on the track next to us, I noticed that
there were a lot of MHC cars on the back.We once took the commuter
train here, it is a nice place to watch trans, expecialy during the
rush hour.

We are playing guess what commuter station is next since Dad used to
always take the train from his home in Philadelphia to his job in
Trenton[in the days when Amtrak was just an infant], so I'm seing how
well he remembers the stops, he's doing pretty good.

North Philadeiphia-This station used to be pretty nice and busy but
now it is pretty run down, trains still stop here though, Dad lived
two blocks from here when he was a kid.

30th Street Station-We were the only consist sitting in the station
even though it was the rush hour.

Wilmington-There is Metroliner sitting on the other track, the
Metroliner's cafe attendant is standing outside smoking, there is
something tacky about that.

Perryville-This is were the tracks cross the Susquehanna river, it was
very impressive since the sun was going down and reflecting off the
river.

Baltimore-It was pretty busy here when we arrived, one Marc train
pulled in while we were sitting here and we met another train inside
the tunnel leading out of the station.

BWI Airport-Rail Station-There is a Metroliner sitting on the center
track and I can look right into it, we think its having mechanical
troubles.

Washington-We arrived five minutes early. We had an hour till we would
take the Marc up to Baltimore, we would be staying with a good friend
of Dads who lives there.

Tip: T do not recomend the Marc cars for sleeping, it was so
uncomfordable I could not wait for us to get to Baltimore.

Baltimore-Dads friend took us out to eat at a place called The Cheese
Cake Factory, check it out sometime, it was very nice.

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Last Updated: 08/11/97 - WebAuthor: Steve Grande - steve@trainweb.com