This is the second post (Post 1) about four trips over four days on a POH-YNY-NYP-NWK-PHL points run muli-city ticket I bought to ride VIA Cars on the Adirondack after Thanksgiving 2012 and to also get nearly enough points for S+ status.
If I am ever already buying a ticket on the Adirondack to and from Penn Station I feel like I am obliged to extend the ticket into a points run since you can add on a leg from NYP to PHL free of charge and on this wacky high bucket trip adding the PHL leg even saved me $7 (High bucket vs. Low Bucket on the Adirondack is a difference of only about $7). This also got me within an Acela trip of Select+ Status that I’m planning as an early Christmas Present later this month.
The first Empire Service train of the morning incredibly enough doesn’t leave Yonkers until 10:06am (the 3 earlier trips are all bypass Yonkers), this is the train I ticketed myself on. The satisfying part about Yonkers is with the monthly Unlimited Ride MetroCard I need to activate today anyway I can easily get up there for free.
The trip starts on a dreary, wet morning walking down to the 1 train at 181 Street where all the northbound countdown clock are frozen on 13 minutes 14 minutes. I end up waiting about ten minutes and debate taking Metro-North up knowing I’ll miss the 9:10 Bee-Line bus (the next bus I believe won’t leave until 9:30 and will give me just 15 minutes to walk down from the bus stop to the train station).
I get to Van Courtland Park at 9:13 and go and look at the timetables. I realize the 2 (and the 3 which has very few trips) also go via Yonkers and a Route 2 leaves at 9:20. I realize at that moment the ride from Yonkers to Van Courtlandt Park is frequent enough to be a just show up and ride route. I get on and dip my unlimited ride MetroCard. I look at my iPhone and get an e-mail about 100 extra TQP points per trip with an unfortunately high $35 spent. I realize though that the math will work out perfectly after these points runs I’ll be 846 points away from S+ and won’t need to do a Keystone segment on my day-trip to Philly. Its an uneventful quick ride up to Getty Square where I arrive 20 minutes later at 9:40.
On a dreary, wet morning I slowly walk down to the Yonkers Train Station and have no idea which platform the train is going to stop at. The Metro-North automated voice soon tells me (and the service advisory boards flash, most Metro-North stations lack actual signs for trains destinations like their LIRR counterparts) “This is a track change, Amtrak Train #236 will depart from Track 1” (a normal northbound track), it also tells me the train is running 15 minutes late.I head up to the platform and also check my iPhone for the train’s lateness. It left Croton-Harmon 8 minutes late It tell’s me 9 minutes than 13 and back to ten.
At 10:14 Empire Service Train #236 comes in and about 10 people get off, I get asked my last name and get scanned in that way to New York on the platform. The conductor isn’t trying to scan barcodes in the misty rain. One door is open for me and another passenger who walks down to the door. He says thank you Jeremy something I don’t appreciate. I settle for the four seats across on the right hand side of the train on this rainy morning. The rest of the car is nearly full. These seats lack legroom so I take my shoes off and put my feet up for the ride. At 155th street tunnels we pass 281 heading north. We arrive 3 minutes late at 10:38 on track 5.
I am a little late to my internship and am on C train at 10:41 to Spring Street. There no seats so I snag the railfan window for that quick trip arriving at 10:50. A nice little diversion to start my day.