Back onto the "T"'s rapid transit system, we waited a few minutes until a northbound Orange Line train came into the Malden Center station. We would ride one stop north to the end of the line in the Oak Grove section of town, and then return southbound.
At Oak Grove, some in our group were taking pictures of the station and the train. A very non-photogenic female conductor started to complain to all of us that photos were not allowed to be taken on MBTA property. She then went onto the train's public address system, and again said that photos cannot be taken on MBTA property, unless you have "some kind of permit". I don't think this woman needs to worry about her mug being on any website or cereal box. What could a group of railfans possibly do to harm the MBTA?
As we began to move south towards Boston, HaRRy informed me that he would be leaving us as this train passed by North Station. Remember he had been riding with us on Pacific Time, and no doubt he needed to get some rest. That is the last our group saw of him. HaRRy did stay in Boston another day, and rode the rest of the DOWNEASTER train to Maine and back, getting on and off at the Woburn station.
We said goodbye to HaRRy as he left us at North Station. The rest of us, now down to a dozen, rode one more stop to Haymarket, a station that currently provides the best possible transfers between the Orange and Green Lines.
Owen and Isak decided to leave the Party here, to do some shopping downtown and then swimming at their YMCA accomodations. They remained on the Orange Line when we got off at Haymarket. I thought they might join us later, but they were comfortable and settled for the evening when I called them later. Owen told me that they would be taking an 8:40 AM AMTRAK train on Sunday morning, so they would not be able to partake of the Sunday portion of the "T" Party. Now we were down to ten.
This part did not go as originally planned, thanks to the "T" springing the last-minute surprise of trackwork on the B trolley line. We would not get to ride on Commonwealth Avenue or get to the loop at Boston College.
Part B11 went as planned, a short ride from Haymarket to Park Street. But we had to change, since we were on a D or E car from Haymarket. We had a few options. We could ride the substitute bus over the B route to show what the route was like, and then walk as scheduled down Chestnut Hill Avenue to catch the C from Cleveland Circle, we could ride the C to Cleveland Circle and back on the same route, or we could ride the C outbound, and return on the nearby D line from the Reservoir station. We were already a little ahead of our schedule, but taking the bus option would surely set us back, so nobody was in favor of that. We decided to save some time, and possibly be able to wrap up our travels sooner than planned. By taking the C outbound to Cleveland Circle, and changing to a D there at Reservoir, we would also eliminate the change at Government Center that was mandated by the original schedule. The D would take us right to Lechmere, and our dinner stop.
So we did the C out to Cleveland Circle, and then returned on the D, going all the way to Lechmere. This move, although we had triplicated our travels on the D a little, caused us to get to Lechmere about an hour ahead of schedule.
On the way through downtown, we lost another one. John Corbett had decided to catch AMTRAK's Acela Regional 167 back to New York, so with his 5:10 PM departure, he had to bow out at Park Street and switch there to the Red Line. We did not get to say goodbye to him because he had been in another car of our light rail couplet. We did wave at him as he was in the station as our doors closed and we proceed north towards Lechmere.
Dinnertime for Nine
From the station we walked under the pedestrian underpass to the west side of the station, and then three blocks through a park to get to the CambridgeSide Galleria mall. At this point, it was Jack, Lou, Jishnu, Mike, Skip, Alan, Bill, Michael, and myself.
Our earlier-than-planned arrival gave us more time to relax our feet, and for me, to walk along all of the restaurants appearing to be interested, in order to be offered a free sample. Usually this sample would be sweet & sour chicken. I had tried a Chinese, a Japanese, and a Thai version of sweet & sour chicken and could tell little differences between them, knowing they were very tasty in their tangy sauces. At least these samples were there after I had my two slices of pizza from Sbarro's, with a Dr. Pepper for a drink. Mike Hammond bought other food, but also bought the drink of my choice.
We agreed that we would depart from the mall's food court at 5:30 PM and continue our travels. Some went out to explore the other stores, and Michael made me take him to the Apple store (not one that sells fruit, but that "other" kind of computer). They have games set up for kids to play on the Mac's.
At 5:30 PM, fully rested, bellies satisfied, and still half an hour ahead of things, the nine of us left the mall and headed back for the Lechmere station.
Lechmere is a busy station, even on Saturdays, because many Bostonians use it to access the large urban mall we had just visited. We were, however, able to board the first Green Line trolley that came, and we were on our way to ride the Blue Line. I did not check if it was a D or an E car; it really didn't matter.
We rode downtown to Government Center, and then walked downstairs to take the Blue Line. Government Center is the westernmost station for this line on weekends and middays, but the trains still make a loop past the Bowdoin station rather than having the operator change ends.
Being ahead of schedule, we did not mind the wait, which was about five minutes. Soon we were being whisked through the old trolley tunnel. After Maverick, we emerged into the late day sun. The line is quite scenic, complete with its glimpses of the ocean.
At Wonderland, which is in the town of Revere, we said goodbye to Jack, who was having somebody pick him up at that station. His home in Lynn is not too far from there.
Eight of us then made our way back downtown. We switched at Government Center from the Blue Line back to the Green Line.
Parts B19 & B20: Green & Red Lines, Government Center-Park Street-Braintree
We took a trolley just one stop to Park Street. Bill left us here, since he did not need to travel to Braintree with us. He went to explore the new Silver Line busway which opened for business that day. As expected of any railfan, he was not impressed.
Now down to half the number we had at 12 noon, the remaining seven of us walked downstairs to catch a Red Line B train back to Braintree. There was the usual entertainment in this station, "musicians" playing in the subway for financial gain from donations.
Lucky for us, a Braintree train came first, and we were on our last conveyance of a very long day. Once at Braintree, the next person to leave us was Skip, who was parked in the adjacent garage. He drove home to Easton from there.
And the rest of us took the now-familiar walk to the Motel 6, and after making arrangements to meet between 7 and 7:15 AM, we bid each other goodnight and went to our separate accomodations. For Mike Hammond and me, the excellent benefit of our earlier-than-expected completion of our travels meant we were in time to watch a special 4-episode marathon of "Cops". Believe it or not though, I was still a bit hungry, so I went next door to Bickfords for a triple scoop of ice cream to consume while watching TV. Unlike the earlier event, there was no rush in obtaining my ice cream, no train to catch for another 12 hours.
Saturday was indeed a long day, and after watching TV there was no problem in falling asleep, to be well rested for our final day on the rails.