If you're like me, you see the words "holiday nostalgia" and your face immediately lights up like the whole of Dyker Heights in December. Just those two happy words seem to offer a chance to escape back to a simpler time time, long before headlines like these came to darken our days. Back when we didn't even know what it meant to be "crush loaded."
So let's all hop aboard the holiday nostalgia train, departing select local train stations (express stops between 2nd Avenue and 125th Street in Manhattan, full schedule below) on the six Sundays between Thanksgiving and New Years.
The New York Transit Museum will be trotting out its 1930s R1-9 train cars in celebration of the "holiday shopping season," ha ha you can't ever escape capitalism's claws. Fortunately, though, you don't have to pay extra for this throwback: It costs you just a MetroCard swipe. (Or, $2.75—for the time being.)
Back in the olden days, seats were upholstered in rattan, rather than crusted in vomit or otherwise "soiled." Cars were not climate controlled, save for the ceiling fans whirring peacefully overhead. Zoning out during your commute, you would've stared unseeingly at vintage posters for Coca Cola or something, rather than a sea of StreetEasy ads showing you where you can live if you have the luxury of choosing your next apartment based on proximity to different types of breakfast sandwich. Sounds like a better way to commute, right? Right.
(Sai Mokhtari / Gothamist)
Because the nostalgia trains are, in many ways, much nicer than your modern subway car, and certainly more novel, if you would like to catch one, here's when and where to do it.
On November 25th, December 2nd, December 9th, December 16th, December 23rd, and December 30th, the holiday nostalgia train will make express stops at:
- 2nd Avenue
- Broadway - Lafayette Street / Bleecker Street
- West 4th Street - Washington Square
- 34th Street - Herald Square
- 42nd Street - Bryant Park
- 47th-50th Streets - Rockefeller Center
- 7th Avenue
- 59th Street - Columbus Circle
- 125th Street
The train runs along the F line between 2nd Avenue and Rockefeller Center, where it will switch to the Central Park West line for the rest of its trip. It departs 2nd Avenue at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m., and 4 p.m., and 125th Street at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m., and 5 p.m.. So if, in coming weeks, you see an antique-looking, holly-festooned subway car come rolling into your station, do not panic: It's not haunted! (It might be haunted.)