Friday, October 21, 2011

A Withdrawal of Service

The title of today's post may mislead you into thinking this another groan of despair about gaps in the tube schedules. It is not. It is a warning that things may be changing around here. [he is referring to this blog: Ed]. My working routine has changed significantly since the summer and I now go into my office at Waterloo no more than 2 times a week. And what do I do the rest of the time you may well ask? Well, ask away, for you ask in vain. This blog is about commuting and not about my private life, albeit that I may have made the occasional reference to non-work doings in the past.

So today's question for the panel is - does going into London twice a week constitute commuting, by which I mean real, old-fashioned,<start Yorkshire accent> when I were a lad we had to travel 26 hours a day and thank railway company for t'privilege <end accent>, sort of commuting? Because it doesn't really feel like commuting. Partly because I am no particular obligation to be at my office at a given time, partly because the knowledge that one is not travelling tomorrow makes it so much easier to face, and even enjoy, going in today. On the other hand I continue to be reliant under the good offices of London Underground to make it possible to leave beautiful Ruislip and venture, gasp, south of the river. The raison d'etre of this blog has therefore not really changed. But perhaps the emphasis may shift from the daily struggle with packed trains to a more eclectic, ephemeral, nay, evanescent, view of life in the subway. [I am waiting for "eldritch" to make its long overdue appearance: Ed]

Monday, October 03, 2011

Standing for it

As the unseasonable heatwave continues, in the south-east at any rate, it was sweltering down in the Tube this afternoon. A nicely air-conditioned "S" stock provided some relief up from Baker Street to Harrow but sadly no spare seats so it was stand all the way for me and many others. LU invited me by email to undertake a survey into the new trains the other day, and I duly went to their website and filled in a set of "satisfied" and "very unsatisfied" and the like on the usual multi-choice questions (Did I like the grab-bars? being something they obviously consider important), and when given the chance, hammered home the point that there are not enough seats on trains intended for relatively long journeys. But it is futile. The design of the S stock was fixed long ago, the trains are being made and we won't get any new ones for another 50 years. So why ask for opinions now?