Commuters coordinate their travel to the minute, to maximize efficiency. If you are traveling to NYC from Dutchess County, you certainly don’t want to make the 2-hour train rides any longer! However, if you are a 4 and 5-year-old going to your 1st NYC show, you wake up 3 hours before the train departs and are ready to go 30 minutes later.
The anticipation of a “bubble show” would be obvious but adding in their first train ride raised the enthusiasm to a fever pitch. My daughter packed their backpack for the long haul that included bagels, donuts, juice pouches, yogurt covered raisins, candy, ring pops and 2 coffees for GG and GPa. We were prepared, just in case there were no food/snack stores in NYC.
Train rides and princesses
As the train traveled south to the city, the girls marveled at things that probably go unnoticed by the daily commuter. First boat sightings were greeted with delight but soon became common place. Seeing a quarry, a train breezing past them, and a train on the western shore of the Hudson all generated a myriad of questions and conversations. The castle on Bannerman Island of course brought up the “obligatory” daily conversation about a princess. No, I don’t think one lives there but yes, I don’t know for sure!
Hopping in a taxi at Grand Central to get to the theater brought out questions of “why” we had to hop into the taxi and why couldn’t we just walk? Just get in the taxi and yes, if you want to hop you can! After the show, we called an Uber rather than hailing a taxi to be sure we did not miss the next train. I was surprised that “hailing a taxi” did not lead to a discussion on the weather, nor did the idea of “catching a train”.
No Carseats on Train Rides?
Our trip included train rides, a taxi ride and an Uber ride. Their excitement was boundless since each mode of transportation came without car seats. When you are 4 and 5 years old, this is a big deal! Their energy was “puppy-like” like a puppy without a leash. If they had tails, they would have been wagging! A formal apology goes out to my daughter since she will be dealing with the “why” car seats are the law but not on a train, taxi or Uber. I’m sure she will have curbed their “car seat free” enthusiasm by the time we see them next. An advantage of being a GG.
Tall buildings. lots of people, and taxis was a new experience for the girls. For their city-living cousins (8, 4 and 2) NYC was home and managed it without a blink. The girls followed their experienced cousins up and down escalators maneuvering through the crowds with confidence with their “city cousins” always in sight. Not to be followers the entire trip, they were the “big cousins” to their 2-year-old New Jersey cousin who loved holding their hands and being one of the girls. Looking at them I imagined them 20 years older going to NYC for a “girls’ day”. This is the stuff that makes a GG smile.
Return Trip to Poughkeepsie
The train ride home was much different. They lamented on the long ride and why Poughkeepsie was the very last stop and questioned our choice of hometowns! On each of the last 5 stops they wanted to get off with the other riders. After explaining that our car was at the Poughkeepsie station, the youngest one suggested that we just call Uber again and he could bring us to our car. Another explanation of Uber as a service. and not our driver’s name ensued.
Giggles set in around Tarrytown, possibly a result of boredom and/or the Mike and Ike candy! They also discovered their dislike for Sweet Tarts and that they indeed were not sweet. A discussion of renaming them Sour Tarts and writing the company was discussed and dismissed. Instead they chose to just eat them and make “sour faces” which brought on a serious case of the “giggles”.
Still stalling for time as the train made its way to Poughkeepsie, we talked about other types of transportation that might be faster than the train to get us up and down to the city. How surprised was GPa to learn from the girls that our next trip to NYC we were going by helicopter or a submarine and that it was GiGi’s idea. That’s not what I said! An explanation of a “bucket list” ensued and now we have helicopters and submarines in our buckets. I also convinced them to add a plane or a boat ride to their bucket lists, since they certainly were more probable.
When the train arrived at 3:50pm at the Poughkeepsie station we transferred them to their mom and dad and waved good bye. As we headed home, we let out a collective sigh of exhaustion. We had lots of fun with all the grandkids but for this GG and GPa, it was time for a nap.
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