Trip from Rotterdam to South Bend and further

Discussion in 'Travelogues / Trip Reports' started by PeeweeTM, Dec 2, 2018.

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  1. Dec 2, 2018 #1

    PeeweeTM

    PeeweeTM

    PeeweeTM

    Train Attendant

    Joined:
    May 9, 2011
    Messages:
    58
    Last winter I took a short trip to the US. 25+11 paid vacation days and no car can give someone that freedom. Wife and children will probably be able to take care of themselves. 

    On January 16th 2018 I started with the metro (subway) to Rotterdam Centraal.

    20180116_0810 RET subway.jpg

    In Rotterdam Centraal I changed into a Intercity Direct to Breda.

    20180116_0814 NS locomotive BR186117.jpg

    20180116_0818_inside_ICD.jpg

    After changing trains I went on to 's Hertogenbosch to attend to a meeting about railway safety. After that I went by train to Eindhoven, here a picture about the signage in the Netherlands (Hello @Penn Station...):

    20180116_1651_Signage_Eindhoven.jpg

    Well, in Eindhoven I changed into an Intercity Bus from Deutsche Bahn, en-route from Antwerp, Belgium to Duesseldorf, Germany. And in Duesseldorf I took the S-Bahn to my hotel. From Rotterdam to Duesseldorf for about $25,-. The dutch trains, german bus and german train all with one ticket. And of course on time!

    Next day I took the train to the airport. Here you can see me taking a picture.

    20180117_0609_Inside_SBahn.jpg

    I flew via Amsterdam to Newark. Nothing spectacular. Took the shuttlebus to a hotel in Elizabeth.

    Next day back to the airport by shuttlebus and then with a NJ-transit bus to Newark Penn. Station. PATH to the Hudson river and by ferry to Wallstreet, Manhattan:

    20180118_1029_Ferry_JC.jpg

    Made a walk to Penn. Station on Manhattan, drank a dutch (Douwe Egberts) 'coffee' from the lounge.

    20180118_1301_NYP_DutchCoffee.jpg

    And walked to Central Park and back, to take the Lake Shore Limited to Chicago.

    Had a nice talk over and after diner with a Republican guy. (I guess I would position myself on the left of Mr. Sanders. Being Dutch also means I know you have to work together with other people for the benefit of society.)

    Had a good night in the upper berth. 

    Got some rotten / mouldy grapes for breakfast and found myself stuck in a discussion between some women about abortion. I won't dig in it further, but just wanted to give examples for a pro and contra for community seating in the diner! ;)

    In Chicago I could take a picture of two well looked after engines of Amtrak...

    20180119_1227_AsGoodAsNewChicago.jpg

    Walked a bit in Chicago, wanted to take a swim, but well, whatever.

    20180119_1400_Chicago.jpg

    20180119_1419_MomPlease_NoSwimming.jpg

    And took the South Shore line to South Bend. It took some time to find the entrance of the Randolph Street station.

    20180119_1520_RandolphStStation.jpg

    20180119_15291_RoomyCab_SouthShore.jpg

    I had a hotel a short walk from the airport station in South Bend.

    Next day took the train back to Chicago.

    20180120_0723_SouthBend.jpg

    20180120_0731_InsideSouthShore.jpg

    20180120_0734_InsideSouthShore.jpg

    20180120_0827_SouthShore.jpg

    In Chicago I had time again to walk a bit around and do some shopping for the train towards Portland.

    20180120_1050_ChicagoUS.jpg

    If I were a bird...

    20180120_1207_IfIWereABird.jpg

    Well, boarded the Empire Builder on time.

    20180120_1341_SuperlinerRoomette.jpg

    20180120_1341_SuperlinerRoomette2.jpg

    Dinner staff made an announcement, that food was included in the sleeper fare, but tips weren't. Is that panhandling?

    Arrival next morning in Minot was about 45 minutes early.

    20180121_0756_MinotND.jpg

    20180121_0815_MinotND.jpg

    A bridge shortly after Minot:

    20180121_1312_Minot.jpg

    Arctic scenery.

    20180121_1008_Arctic.jpg

    20180121_1036_Arctic.jpg

    And a camping ground for freight cars:

    20180121_1053_FreightCarsCampingOut.jpg

    Some pictures of the inside of coach in a Super Liner:

    20180121_1236_SuperLiner_Coach.jpg

    20180121_1236_SuperLinerCoach2.jpg

    20180121_1237_SuperLinerCoach.jpg

    An BNSF locomotive:

    20180121_1500_BNSF.jpg

    It was dark when we entered the Rocky Mountains.

    The second part of the night the ride, especially accelerating and braking became less comfortable. After arriving in Portland the probable cause was:

    20180122_1011_ExplainsBumpyRide.jpg

    Walked to Powell's Bookstore and back to take the train to Seattle. Saw quite a lot of homeless looking people.

    20180122_1533_BNSF.jpg

    20180122_1545_Seattle.jpg

    Above in Seattle. Below some pictures of a Talgo wheelset and a modern generation Flexifloat boogie.

    20180122_1545_Talgo.jpg

    20180122_1546_Flexifloatbogie.jpg

    Had some Seattle style fast food, with a ferry in the background. Saw again a lot of homeless looking people.

    20180122_1607_FastFoodSeattleAndFerry.jpg

    I had a hotel by the airport and the next day I flew via Salt Lake City back to New York, JFK.

    Below few from my hotel in Manhattan:

    20180123_1721_Manhattan.jpg

    Walked a bit and took another scenic picture:

    20180123_2114_RubbishInManhattanTypical.jpg

    Next morning I took a small detour back to JFK, starting in Grand Central Terminal:

    20180124_1011_GCT.jpg

    Metro-North towards Bridgeport:

    20180124_0949_Metro-North.jpg

    In Bridgeport I saw a leave-sucker:

    20180124_1244_LeaveSucker.jpg

    20180124_1250_Metro-North_Bridgeport.jpg

    And took a ferry to Port Jefferson:

    20180124_1322_Ferry_Bridgeport.jpg

    20180124_1333_FerryToPortJefferson.jpg

    In Port Jefferson I did some illegal standing:

    20180124_1456_IllegalStanding.jpg

    And walked to the LIRR-station:

    20180124_1535_LIRR_PortJefferson.jpg

    And two pictures of the inside of the train to Jamaica:

    20180124_1611_InsideLIRR.jpg

    20180124_1611_InsideLIRR2.jpg

    Smooth ride, nice diesel sound. Waited about ten minutes before a track was available in Jamaica.

    Flight back to Amsterdam was okay. Flight to Duesseldorf too. In Duesseldorf I just missed the train to Arnhem, so had to wait a full hour and watch trains at the station. It was a nice new train, needing three current systems (15 kV AC in Germany, small 25 kV AC spot after the border crossing, 1,8 kV DC further into the Netherlands.) From Arnhem it was known territory again (I drove trains to Emmerich (Germany) a few times, but last one is almost ten years ago 

    IMG_2926.jpg

    back to Rotterdam via Utrecht, trains running every 15 minutes, so no timetable needed!

    Well, I would like to say: "see you next time USA", but between last winter and now I've been there a few times again already...  :)

    20180124_0949_BufferStop.jpg

    20180124_1043_InsideMetro-North.jpg

    20180124_1043_InsideMetro-North2.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 3, 2018
  2. Dec 2, 2018 #2

    cpotisch

    cpotisch

    cpotisch

    Conductor

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    7,509
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Wonderful report and pictures! Thank you for posting! Laughed at how the diner staff explained that tips aren’t included. :)
     
  3. Dec 2, 2018 #3

    caravanman

    caravanman

    caravanman

    Conductor

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Nottingham, England.
    Nice photo report. Liked the humour too.  I also noticed many "down and out" people on the streets in Seattle and Portland on my last trips.

    I guess at least in the summer the west coast has better weather for rough sleeping?

    Glad you made it to Powells Bookshop, was that the whole reason for your trip to Portland?  :D

    How did you manage to photograph so many empty trains, were most rides at 4am?  :p

    Ed.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 2, 2018
  4. Dec 3, 2018 #4

    PeeweeTM

    PeeweeTM

    PeeweeTM

    Train Attendant

    Joined:
    May 9, 2011
    Messages:
    58
    Ed, bookstores are always a reason to visit a city!  :)

    And I guess, I just traveled at quiet times; Metro-North end of the morning and South Shore near South Bend was rather empty, too. 
     
  5. Dec 5, 2018 #5

    ehbowen

    ehbowen

    ehbowen

    Conductor

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Messages:
    2,133
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    Yeah. I might not call that panhandling, exactly, but it's certainly tacky. Especially since Amtrak diner staff may have the best base salary and benefits of any wait staff in the United States.
     

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