Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Light Rail Snafus

I usually don't post on consecutive days like this but last night's commute really took the cake. The morning commute went off without a hitch other than the light rail took 15 minutes to get to the station unfortunately. The evening would prove a sore trial.

The first hint something was screwy should have been me seeing 3 trains go by within 10 minutes on the opposite track and my train still not in the station. I had left in plenty of time to catch the train and get to the express stop I had thought. The train was late and when it did come it was packed tot he gills and folks gave me lip about bringing a bike on board until I asked them what the stupid bicycle racks were for if bikes weren't allowed on the train.

The train meandered it's way down and people were turned out at several stations due to the full trains. Most folks were riding for exploration and pleasure. A few of us were honest to goodness commuters trying to get home. 5:00 PM rolled around and I wasn't out of the train so I figured since I missed the bus anyway I'd ride to the end of the line and catch the link and I would still beat the next express home. Big mistake.

Due to the volume of people the train was already running slow and after an 30 minutes or so we were stopped due to a broken train ahead. All in all a 50 minute journey turned into nearly 2 hours. There were a lot of unhappy folks. Most of them will likely not be back but they probably wouldn't have anyway. The folks who hope for a solution will wait for the kinks to work out I figure. After all, this system didn't start out easy, it got hit full force out of the door with the volumes they have been running. I figure they'll be troubleshooting things for a few weeks. I'll keep the faith.

I had to stand for about an hour in really squished quarters but eventually the pleasant older chap I had been chatting too left and I got his "seat" which was really just the flat spot under the other bike hanger but it was better than standing.

I finally got to the bus stop at 6:30 having just missed the link. I had a choice between waiting for the link at 7pm or catch the bus down university at 6:45. See as the link stops less frequently I figured I'd chance it with the link. 2 guys with bikes showed up to wait after I did. Being the nice guy that I am I let them have the rack and I folded my bike up and didn't even get any lip from the driver this time. I met lots of nice senior folk who were excited about using the train in the future despite the day's experiences. Goll durn it, just when I was getting a strong distaste for snowbirds along comes a couple of nice old couples and spoils it. I guess I should have expected it. I suppose the grouchy "we deserve the world" old crowd are still commited to their Cadillacs, and Lincoln Love boats.

I finally got home just before 8 PM having left just after 4pm. My mistake of not waiting for the other express bus cost me around 2 hours worth of time.

1 comment:

Bruce's Bike Blog said...

You are a God among insects, my fine feathered friend!