Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Metro Observations...

  • DC natives always start walking in the same direction as the train when it pulls into the station. I think the theory is that there are more available seats at the front of the train. I'm not really sure what it is, but I do it too. One of my friends will NOT walk with the train. Since he reports on trains - I defer to him, although it kills me.
  • Kids get so excited about riding Metro. To them it's a "real train." My friend's son Caleb, train enthusiast age 4, was rendered silent by the awe and wonder of being on the Metro. - nose pressed to the glass, whispering "train" every few seconds, his words clouding the window. The absolute best Metro stop for kids: National Airport. Both trains and planes - it's nearly too much. Kids come pretty damn close to levitating. I wish I could get that excited about simple things. Maybe I do - I get a little thrill when I travel by air. It's the whole thing, leaving responsibilities and worries behind - at least for a little while. Feeling like an adult (for once, I might add.) My parents travelled with us A LOT while we were young, and I'm thankful that they did. As worrywartish as they both are, they instilled that when you're travelling as long as you have your passport, a toothbrush, and access to a source of money - you're good to go. (Apparently, I have the formula down cold, since I emailed it practically word-for-word to a friend.)
  • Public transportation cultivates the cult of anonymity. Most people treat their commute as a little oasis of silence. Time to catch up on a book, read the newspaper (to the motor skill-challenged who can't do this without throwing 'bows - seriously, read The Express - it was designed for you), listening to music, or in some other way acting like you're the only person on the train. Subways compromise personal space and I think retreating into a silent bubble is a way of recreating that space. In an odd way, it's the polite thing to do.
  • I love that Metro riders wait for people to exit the train before boarding. You can always tell when someone is from out of town. Recently, one woman commented to her husband and two kids, "Look! They wait for people to get off first!" Then she turned to me and said, "We're from New York." You don't say.
  • Johnny Depp is SO much prettier than me


Manish said...

Johnny Depp, feh. You don't want his moustache.

Heather said...

Good observations. I do the train walking thing, too, but it's usually because at my end stop, I know where the escalator is, but don't want to stand there originally in case the train doesn't pull all the way up. And, yes, because there are less people at the ends; I'm a stander, so the fewer people I have to share a pole with, the better. So, I guess I've rationalized it to myself somehow. :)

In NY they push on? I always thought that was a "I've never ever been on a subway before" thing.

busybee said...

What kills me is that in NYC people will quietly stand on escalators and in DC we'll holler at the tourist who DARES to simply STAND on the Right side of the escalator!

maisnon said...

Oh, you can stand on the right side - in fact it's the only side to stand on without someone barking. To survive Metro at rush (which keeps expanding and expanding, soon the exception will swallow the rule) remember:

Stand RIGHT, walk LEFT