Downeaster July 2021

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Joined
Sep 2, 2021
Messages
275
Location
Lubec, ME
A round trip on the Amtrak Downeaster and MBTA from Brunswick ME to Worcester MA to visit family.

From our son's house in Lewiston drove the 20 min or so to Brunswick where there is parking about $3 a day IIRC in a lot East of the station. Train 684 came in around 10 from the layover facility and we boarded in plenty of time for our 10:15 departure. I had business class tickets which shared half of a cafe car as the first car of the train. Normally the South end of the DE is a former F40 "cabbage" car but the cabbages were being overhauled so we had dual P32's on this set.

The DE was comfortable with 2+1 seating. They were assigning couples to the double seats and singles to the singles. The crew down had one conductor who was very strict about masks, requiring people to mask up between sips and bites which took some if the fun out of breakfast on the train. Crew on the way back was more lenient.

We were delayed a little at Saco where we had a 3 way meet with a Westbound DE and a freight which involved us pulling into the same track as the freight, waiting for the other DE then backing out back onto the main. Overall I think we got to Boston about 20 min late. It was interesting viewing the construction of the Green Line extension along the last stretch into BON.

At BON since we had plenty of time before our train to Worcester, we took the Green Line to Park St. then the Red Line to South Station. With a tighter connection I would have opted for the Orange Line to BBY but South Station is a much nicer place to wait than the dungeon that is BBY.

I forgot to mention that the cafe sells Charlie Cards for $5 each preloaded with $5 in fares so you are all set when you get to Boston. The DE cafe is run by Nexdine and is somewhat better stocked than a typical Amcafe.

Waited at South Station for the Worcester Line MBTA train. The ride out to the end of the line at Worcester's grand station takes about an hour and a half and is fairly scenic in spots. There was some kind of issue at Framingham that delayed us about 10 to 15 minutes.

Return trip a couple of days later was similar and fairly uneventful, got back to Brunswick about 15 min late, paid for our parking and drove home.
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2021
Messages
682
Location
Boston
Taking the Downeaster is always nice! Glad you managed to have minimal complications.

Unfortunately, the DE seems plagued with them nowadays! Out of the 4 or so trips Ive taken in the last year, 3 of them were delayed by a half hour or more.
 
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