There and Back Again.

So I realise when it comes down to it, that I shouldn't actually complain about the public transport in London. I've done it before, and yes, compared to what we have back home in Sydney, it's fan-freaking-tastic, but seriously - some days I wonder how the whole system stays running.

The usual 4-5 minute wait between my local train has been doubled since June due to line maintainence, meaning that if I miss the train of a morning? 10 minutes until the next one. Now there's an instant way to RUIN the nice early start you had planned for that particular morning.

If you thought that once you actually got on the train, things would be relatively speedy, you would be wrong. Nope. My line is possibly the slowest journey over the shortest distance imaginable. On a good day, the first part of my journey only takes 15 minutes. Since I've come back from my overseas trip? Nearly every morning, it takes me double that time again. Why? Because apparently the trains like to stop dead between stations now for absolutely no reason what so ever. No, really. I'm not in a rush. Please, stop at the next station with the doors open for ten minutes so that the already over-crowded trains can become even more crowded by random people crushing into the carriages.

Sigh. I'm not bitter, really I'm not.

Okay. Fine. I'm bitter. But every morning? It's getting a trifle irritating. Let's not even go into the fact that the second part of my journey is on the most disgusting tube line in London - the dreaded, squished Central line. It's becoming so congested and disgusting in the mornings (and don't even get me started on the evening time frame!) that I'm debating leaving home earlier and just walking the tube line. Only pain is that a five minute tube ride turns out to be a 25 minute walk. Maybe alright for summer, but it's getting cold already. Hrm. Might have to give it a shot, sometime. At least it'll add to my exercising routine!

Apart from signal failures and defective trains, my all time favourite reason for train delays would have to be due to a 'person under a train'. I swear, there are people under trains every hour in this city; what is going on? Are people falling under them? Jumping? Accidentally finding themselves wandering the tracks of an afternoon? I don't understand.

It's days like this that I miss my car.

So it's your turn to share/gripe/complain - what's your journey to work like?

14 Comments • Labels: ,  


Nathan Pralle said...

My drive involves driving for 42 minutes (45 miles) EACH way along back-country blacktops and very curvy ones at that, dodging the occasional deer and/or raccoon. Somedays it's a terribly long drive and sometimes I love it...kinda depends on what mood I'm in.

Julie said...

My commute consists of one of the following:

1- Running for the bus because it is earlier than scheduled.

2- Waiting 20 minutes for the bus because it is late.

Then getting angry while on the bus because there is traffic and "Hi" buses travel on roads like cars, so while you are not in your own car you are still sitting in traffic!!

Operation Pink Herring said...

In my 15-minute walk to work I get to dodge junkies and almost get hit by buses at least three times each morning. ON the way home, at least one dog usually tries to attack me. It's great exercise!

Fiona said...

I've just moved two streets down from work. So no gripes yet!

nancypearlwannabe said...

Well, I drive to work, and I have to be there super early so I miss any traffic I might otherwise encounter. It usually takes me about 25 minutes and I get to listen to the news and have my coffee, so I don't mind it at all, really.

Viviane said...

I can't really complain. I get on the bus a few steps from my door, 22 minutes later get off the same bus and am a few steps from work. The bus runs every 10 minutes and is usually on time. I really love living so much closer to pretty much everything now than I used to. And luckily the bus is usually not crowded when I get on so I can sit, and when it does get crowded I don't care because I am sitting and either reading or catching another 15-20 minutes of shut-eye.

Teacher A said...

Driving with variable traffic, which is possibly even more frustrating than driving with constant traffic. And last Friday? No traffic, but a massive line to get on base. It took an extra 20 minutes to get to work once I got off the freeway!

kirby said...

i got lucky .. I drive for about 40 minutes, just before the peak hits, both ways. It's a pretty sweet deal. Saturdays, I can be there in about 25 minutes though, so I hit snooze twice more than I do on weekdays.

Miss Em said...

At the moment my commute is a 5 min drive. 4 min if I speed. However, thanks for warning me what I'm in for when I hit London in Feb. Yikes!

Lia said...

My commute is long. The express bus, leaving two hours before rush hour starts, takes about an hour to an hour and a quarter. Oh, how I miss the train system!

Ree said...

You don't want to know what my commute is like. Okay... well I roll out of bed. Walk six steps. Sit down at my desk.

Sorry 'bout that.

Noelle said...

I chose my apartment based on its proximity to work, so I only have about 10 minutes of lovely Hudson Valley hills and one traffic light on my way to work. I've been going home for lunch every day, too.

Lara said...

sorry, but my work commute is about 8 minutes by side streets. :-P

i'll appreciate it more now, though!

Robyn said...

My drive to work takes 10-15 minutes for 5-6 miles. I take a shortcut through a council estate (rough) with hundreds of speedbumps. and they're building a massive new bypass, so there are lots of cones near the industrial estate I drive past. Lovely new tarmac though. Obviously I live in a really nice place!

Person under a train = suicide.

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