Dancing the Megatropolis


Chapter 10: Providence to Boston



It was a beautiful sunny day in Providence, not too warm or humid (a real contrast from the previous day in DC), but I couldn’t linger without taking a later train than I’d planned. I considered it but decided I’d rather just get there. The station was easy to find and only about three-tenths of a mile away, in an appealing Brutalist building. I cut through the rotunda and down the stairs to my platform, hurrying because the signs said my train was boarding. On the platform, there was no train to be found. It pulled in a couple minutes later (when the signs changed to “Last Call”), and left one minute late at 5:07pm.


MBTA Train 830

Providence, RI to Boston, MA (South Stn)

Fare: $12.25

Cumulative Fare: $126.23


The train was an interesting mix of single- and bi-level cars, and mostly empty. I think these cars were from the ‘80s, but they were comfortable enough. 


I love it when regional rail connects city pairs that are sizable cities in their own right, rather than edge/bedroom/suburbs. Real interurban stuff! Providence-Boston, NYC-Newark-Trenton-Philly, Baltimore-DC, etc.


It also felt super-neat to go across an entire state, by foot, bus, and train, in about four hours! Which even included an hour and a half at the bookstore when I wasn’t moving.

We got to Boston’s South Station one minute early, and after I got off the train I had a moment of panic because I left my earbuds behind. Raced back to the train to retrieve them, but they were nowhere to be found…until I realized they’d been around my neck the whole time. 


It was a quick walk to my hostel in Chinatown. I’d contemplated going out to the oldest restaurant in the country, but inertia won out as it’d been a long day, and I went around the corner to a good Vietnamese place instead before turning in for the night.