Thursday, April 21, 2016

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2016 - Letter R

Disney World Vacation:

  Planning, Prepping, Packing and Postponing a trip of a lifetime and things I learned along the way.

Riding the Rails, Taking the Train: Long, long time ago, my husband would drive the almost 400 miles to get to Alison's house. He loved to drive and it was no big deal for him. However, because of work schedules, we seldom visited.

Then, the last few years of my career, I had more time off and I made the drive myself. I would push myself to get there arriving stiff and sore. On the way home, I'd be exhausted from the non-stop schedule Alison and I had kept up for a week. Once, I had a bad cold and missed my exit and ended up lost in Syracuse for several hours. I was always afraid of detours, flat tires, and falling asleep.

Enter the Amtrak train. Gary drives me East for an hour to Poughkeepsie, I board the train and I leave the driving to the engineer. The price is comparable to driving and there is no wear and tear on the car. The conductors are friendly and extremely helpful with luggage. 

I sit on the left side of the car so I can see the rivers, first the Hudson until Albany and then the Mohawk and even the Erie Canal for awhile. The train weaves through towns called Rhinecliff, Schenectady, Amsterdam, Rome, Rochester and finally Buffalo on its way to Niagara Falls. Most of the time the scenery is wonderful. Lots of times I am looking at the backside of the towns and neighborhoods I pass, with all the garbage, trashed cars and discarded furniture that brings.

I am allowed two suitcases weighing 50 lbs. or less and a carry-on that will fit in the overhead. I am always right at the limit. I am always looking for more efficient ways to pack and while researching what to bring to Disney on Pinterest, I have found some great ideas to try out. Hopefully I've learned to leave the kitchen sink at home.
Amtrak trip around the country! the perfect way to elope!:
I love the ever changing views of the rivers.

Some trips, the train is full to capacity with little kids roaming the aisles, babies crying, people talking loudly on their cell phones. Other trips, the 1/2 filled coach allows the college students and myself to stretch out in two seats, napping and reading. I bring my lunch, water and a few snacks. There is a snack car located on the train with essentials where I occasionally get hot tea at $2.00 a cup.
Amtrak Northeast Corridor:
The train allows me to travel to Buffalo and back all year long.
There are two restrooms to a car but I wouldn't call them restful. Balancing as the train changes tracks can sometimes be an exciting and dampening experience.
I color, read, play scrabble, talk to sisters and children on the phone. The train provides wi-fi and you can also charge your devices. I nap a lot. There is no stress on the train and I find that rhythmic moving very conducive to sleep. Before I know it, I've arrived at my destination and someone is meeting me...

7 more days of Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2016. Please stay with me to find out what is the cause of our postponement and what we do about it.

(Photo credit Pinterest:  Amtrak trains) 


JoJo said...

My mom wouldn't fly so we only ever took the train for long trips and I've done that same trip you do, except I started out in Boston. How long is the trip from where you live to Buffalo? It's a long drive....we did that for a Dead show in 1989. Foxboro MA to Buffalo in one day. We were on the road like 10 hours.

Suz said...

6 1/2 hours on a good day. The train often has a mind of its own. Amtrak doesn't own the tracks so it often has to pull to the side to allow other trains to go by which can lead to delays.