The accumulated woes of commuting

Or why I hate public transport [train edition 1.0]

Hate is a strong word. I don’t hate public transport: loathe, detest and dislike are perhaps better [yes, I know, some of those are synonyms for hate, Sue me!]

At least, that’s how I used to feel until ‘we’re waiting for a member of train crew’ or ‘train has been cancelled due to shortage of staff’ became reasons for me to be late to work or, worse still, late home. 7pm turns into 7:30pm or later. Those of you that use services other than Southeastern or Thameslink [2 out of 3 of the worst rail providers in Britain, aren’t I a lucky girl!] may think consistent delays sound ludicrous. Some of you may be long-term sufferers of Southern and think my journey is a walk in the park [at least there is a train for you to get on, I hear you cry!] For context, strikes and staff shortages plague the Southern network, among other things. I myself have been fortunate enough to have my worst experience be snaking queues and a 2 hour wait to even get onto the platform.


the dreaded delay wipeout [taken from the Evening Standard]

If it wasn’t a[n almost] daily occurrence, I don’t think I’d detest it so. The crammed, airless carriages have their own merits and faults depending on the season More on that later. My biggest gripe is the amount commuters pay [£610 per MONTH from my town to London] and the treatment we get. Not enough room for my legs, standing room only for ½ my journey if I’m 2 minutes late, one plug socket between 2 [ok sockets are a luxury, but still I WANT TO RECHARGE MY DEVICES *whines*]. Think about it, how many people use the railways every single day? How much money must these companies be making? Obvs companies are designed to make dollar, but at the expense of my well-being? I think not, Southeastern.

How CONVENIENT for you, Southeastern, that my trains are always delayed by 29 mins or less [delay repay kicks in at 30 mins plus].

Congestion, further delays, all of the people looking to get the next train piling on your train, the train being cut shorter [6 instead of 12 coaches for the same amount of people, woohoo!] And don’t get me started on the other commuters.

Well, you can. But you’ll have to wait.

Do you commute too, or are trains just a small part of your life? Let me know!

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6 thoughts on “The accumulated woes of commuting

  1. ericlahti says:

    I don’t commute, but I spend a lot of time dealing with trains. Among other things, I write software that tracks and communicates with heavy rail trains in the Chicago area. They’re cantankerous beasts.


      • ericlahti says:

        We had a guy working in our Chicago office who’d worked with an old company called GeoFocus. When Chicago Metra wanted to swap out their old GeoFocus systems, he was just in the right place at the right time. I got pulled into the project because they needed a database guy and I wound up writing our background services and processes that communicate with the trains. Just lucky, I guess. It’s been a fascinating job. I’ve even gotten to go onto trains and dig around in the electronics lockers and under the operator consoles. Neat, but those things are filthy.


  2. Tooting Hustle says:

    30 minutes delayed is far too big of an interval to have trains delayed and not compensated! Do they expect us to arrive 30 minutes early as to not have it affect our journeys?

    I wrote something similar about commutes into London. check it out at
    Happy Blogging x


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