Thursday, February 20, 2003

Traveling on public transportation is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get
Holy moly, the public transport around here is super crappy lately. I feel the need to get this off my proverbial chest so here goes. Yesterday, as I was on my way into the city for a job (temp gig answering phones), I was on a subway train that was taken out of service. Along with the fact that every stop took twice as long as it should have taken, what should be no more than a little more than an hour ride took over an hour and a half. Then, going home, my train line was the first one to show, which I though "great, at least getting home will be easier". How wrong I was. The train had trouble starting and the car behind it (two car train) had to push it to the next stop. They emptied out the train (which had been packed) and we went and stood on the platform along with the massive crowd already there. No trains could get through because the broken car was stuck on the track. More people came to the platform. People started walking on the train tracks to get further down the platform. A sea of people pushing and shoving and being generally crappy. Although some people were nice and trying to take the event in stride. Others felt they had the right to shove their way down through the crowd to be "first", even though many others had been standing there a long time waiting. Two trains finally came but as they attempted to let people off, so others could get on, the situation got even more crazy. Those exiting the trains started yelling and shoving and there was no where for the folk standing on the platform to move so they could get through. We are talking massive fire hazzard here. Massive. I finally got on the third train that came by, after an hour or so of being stuck in a mob. I went home, had dinner and went to bed, as I was extremely tired from being so stressed out. This morning, I got up to go to the job again, thinking nothing could be as bad as yesterday. Boy was I wrong. Everything was going fine when I got to the subway station. There was a seat, they didn't spend too long at each stop. We were making great time. Until we went under a bridge and sparks started to fly. It looked as if the whole side of the subway car was being hit with fire bombs or something, although I think it was the wires (the subway is really a trolley car at this point). Of course I was sitting right next to the door where sparks were flying. Everyone around me jumped/moved away from the side of the car. At the next stop we were told to get off the train. All of us in the first car only though. Those who were in the second car were able to continue on for some reason. Lucky them. We were told it could 10 minutes to an hour before they got the line running again, and that we should walk over to where the buses were and take them into town where we could hook back up with the subway. I have never seen so many lost-looking people standing around. You see, those who take the subway rarely take the bus as well, so everyone was trying to figure out where the buses were and where they went to. I found a woman who I saw asking another where the bus stops were and I followed her to a bus stop. I took the bus to the subway and amazingly enough was only 30 minutes late to work. All and all it has been an "exciting" week and I am massively happy that tomorrow is Friday and also my last day of this job/commuting. At least for the time being. Between the snow and the whole commuting thing...I'm feeling fried. I'm starting to wonder if this whole thing is a plot by the mass transit people to get comradery amongst it's users. Or something like that ;)
If you have any commuting horror stories, share them in the comments so I don't feel so bad. :)

UPDATE: I cannot believe it happened again! On my way home last night I was 3 stops away from nearly being home and the subway car ahead of the one I was in broke down. This has been insanity! But thankfully this morning I made it in with no troubles!

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