Normally I take a bus from Port Authority bus station on 41st Street and 8th Avenue in New York City when I go to either Washington DC, Boston, Baltimore, or even Pittsburgh to do a 30 Plus Teams Tour.
This time I decided to take Amtrak because the fares were so low.
Leaving from Amtrak would mean I would have to go either through Penn Station at 33rd Street from the Long Island Railroad or E train if I took the subway from Queens.
Not any more.
As of January 1, 2021, the long awaited new Pennsylvania Station opened up
Its official name is the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Train Hall and it’s a work of art, no lie.
It was named for the late New York senator, Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
Now for some of you who weren’t born in New York City or just moved here in the past few years, the station may not look that spectacular to you.
But to those of us who remember the old Penn Station, the crowds, the filth, this station is beautiful.
It’s also very convenient if, like me, you’re coming from Queens or Long Island on the Long Island Railroad.
Amtrak trains not only leave from here, but so does the Long Island Railroad.
So when I got off the Long Island Railroad train from Locust Manor, I followed the signs to the escalator to the station.
I didn’t even have to go outside.
The station is located in the old James Foley Post Office on 33rd and 8th Avenue.
The post office is still there, not just as big.
The old Penn Station not only had Long Island Railroad trains, but the subway, Amtrak and New Jersey transit trains.
Now, the New Jersey Transit trains just leave from the old Penn Station, which is still across the street, underneath Madison Square Garden.
However, if your Amtrak train gets in after midnight, sorry, the new Penn Station is closed.
Your train will go to the old Penn Station.
My only complaint with the new Penn Station is the tracks for the Long Island Railroad trains aren’t close to the Amtrak trains.
Coming back from Washington DC, my FLIX Bus stopped next door.
I had to run to catch a 6:45pm train which left from track 18.
Track 18 WASN’T on the main floor.
Needless to say the Sports Diva wasn’t a happy camper being a real New Yorker, running through a terminal to catch a train that was leaving in 10 minutes, loaded down with a purse and a carry-on suitcase.
There are no escalators going down just a ramp and stairs.
(I made my train, by the way)
What I love about this terminal is that you can’t loiter if you don’t have a ticket, and there’s enough security to make sure that happens.
All in all, if the fares are good, I will take Amtrak and enjoy going through the new Penn Station in New York City.
Normally when I travel to Boston, Philadelphia or DC, I take a bus from Port Authority, but this time I decided to do something completely different.
I’m going by Amtrak from the new Penn Station in New York at the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Hall .
More about this station in an upcoming post.
I rarely took Amtrak because their fares were outrageous to put it nicely, even in coach class.
This time, I kept checking prices and discovered with my senior citizen discount, the most it would be one way was $29-69.
I could afford that and only paid $29
I was going one way on Amtrak because coming back on Sunday, even with a discount, the fares are ridiculous.
I didn’t even have to print out my ticket.
Hello e-ticket, which was right on my phone along with any information about the ride, not to mention those miles I’m going to get from signing up for Amtrak rewards.
I hadn’t been on Amtrak in years especially down to DC, so the Sports Diva was like a kid in a candy shop looking out the window for stations that I recognized like 30th Street in Philly, Newark Penn Station, Baltimore Penn Station and stops that I had no idea where they were, like the Amtrak Metropark station, which I discovered from friends who live near there , that it’s in Iselin, NJ.
When we got to DC after a delay due to switching problems at the New Carrollton, Maryland station, I realized that unlike a bus ride, I wasn’t tired.
I was very relaxed and ready to take the Washington Metro train to meet up with my family.
As I mentioned in my last post, my 30 Plus Teams Tour took me to Jamaica Hospital in the Queens neighborhood of Richmond Hill.
To get to Jamaica Hospital, I had to do something that I hadn’t done since March 2020.
Take the infamous New York City subway.
Since the coronavirus happened I hadn’t taken the subway at all, and given all the negative things that had been going on since the coronavirus happened and people in New York City, who grew up taking the subway suddenly got stuck on stupid, I was apprehensive taking any train, let alone the two lines that are closest to me, the E and F trains.
Unfortunately, the only way I could get to the hospital was on the E train, so I had no choice but to take the train, mask in hand.
Luckily, I only had to go two stops from Jamaica Center.
Nothing had changed.
The subways are still dirty, still crowded and still slow.
While doing a 30 Plus Teams Tour staycation of Kew Gardens , I wanted something to drink, but not an adult beverage and not a coffee from either Dunkin Donuts or Seven Eleven coffee.
While doing some exploring around the area near the Kew Gardens Long Island Railroad Station was, I noticed a place called , ‘Mr. Wish’.
It claimed that it had ‘healthy bubble drinks and fruit teas.’
I looked at the pictures on the store window and on the menu, and I saw a drink that I hadn’t had since I lived in Los Angeles .
It was Pearl Milk Tea.
For $3.75 plus taxes, I figured why not get a medium one?
I had time to kill before my train back to Locust Manor came.
The Pearl Milk Tea was delicious , and made just the way I like my bubble tea.
No sugar needed, and big bubble pieces that are big but not that big that they won’t fit through your straw .
It just so happens that Mr. Wish’s teas and fruit juices are the number one brand in Taiwan and besides having stores in Taiwan and the United States , they also have locations in China , Vietnam , plus 150 other locations.
It’s easy to see why.
The store that I went to is located at 80 – 62 Lefferts Boulevard , Kew Gardens .
Mr. Wish claims that they have ‘authentic Fruit and Bubble Teas.’
If you can’t get to New York City or the borough of Queens, see if there is a Mr. Wish in your city.
You won’t be disappointed and the prices are very reasonable .