I’m thinking of getting rid of my car (not now during winter though, sod that for a game of soldiers, after the winter obviously). I’ve been doing my sums lately and my car mileage to car cost ratio doesn’t add up economically wise. I’m basically paying over the odds to keep myself warm and tucked up in bed for an extra hour. So I may take the bold leap back into the heady world of public transport and trains. I’ve never liked using trains though.
In massive stations, there can be multiple platforms with multiple trains on the same stretch of track. The smaller stations I’ve been at are, at best, poor for sign postage. It can be about as clear as mud where you should be to get the train you want. I always have that pang of apprehension wondering if I’m on the right platform and always double check with someone – as if I’m not confident in my own reading ability…
In the past I’ve never lived/worked anywhere close to an accessible train route. It’s only on the odd occasion when I’ve ventured out of the city without the brum brum that I’ve had to get the choo choo.
Many moons ago I successfully made it cross country from Amsterdam to Brussels on a train and of all the times I’ve used a train (literally a maximum of 20 times) I’ve never got on the wrong one or had any mishaps. So my apprehensions of the big metal tubes, that go dead dead fast with insane people, all herded like cattle into them, is at best…mental.
Buses never give me apprehension. If you get on the wrong bus, it’s simple enough to get off at the next stop a few hundred yards up the road, or ask the driver to drop you at the lights. You can’t exactly go up to a train driver and say “eh mate, can you let me off at the next junction?”! Instead you end up on some platform in the middle of nowhere with a trek and a (probable) long wait to go a few miles back to whence you came.
The only thing I really use my car for is to get to work. If I swapped to public transport *shudder*, it’d cost me a fraction of what I pay out now. Moneywise it seems like a no-brainer. So the metal box of convenience may be going and I’ll be stepping back into the gloomy, but brave, world of public transport again (only after winter though).