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  • Public Transportation

    I took public transportation today down to Philly for a doctor's appointment with a very busy, but very well respected doctor for the kidney stones.

    I parked my car over at the middle school near my home this morning and walked over to the trolley stop. From there, I went to the terminal to take the El downtown.

    I was so lost and confused. I had no idea where I was going or which lines I was supposed to take. I haven't taken public transportation since I was a teenager going to the mall, and now I know why I always hated it so much. I just didn't know what the hell I was doing.

    I got off the wrong stop on the Market/Frankford Line and I saw an officer talking with some SEPTA employees, so I asked for help.

    I was told I needed to get on the El and take the next stop. I told him I had just gotten off, and and asked how far of a walk would it be (a few blocks). He then offered to put me back on the train for free. I thanked him, but declined. I told him I'd walk if he just pointed me in the right direction.

    I made it to my appointment on time, but I really wish I had driven. While public transportation wasn't bad, I just don't care for it. I did it because parking is a bitch downtown and very expensive. It would have cost me $15 for the 3.5 hours I spent downtown at the doctor's today. It cost me $5.20 round trip using public transportation, transfers included.

    My surgery is scheduled for next Friday, so I have to go back again Tuesday or Wednesday of next week to see a cardiologist and an anesthesiologist, and I'm trying to decide whether to just drive down, or do the train and trolley again. I'd hate to pay $15 for parking in the garage or drive around forever looking for a place to park on the street.

    How many of you take public transportation on a daily basis or have in the past? Do/did you like it? Any bad experiences? Are the public transportation systems clean in your area? What forms of transportation are available (bus, trolley, train)?

  • #2
    when i used to take day classes at John Jay (manhattan), i took the train. i always try to schedule my classes so that im taking the train when rush hour is moving in the opposite direction, ie: im riding from queens to NYC when everyone getting off work in NYC is going home to queens.

    as long as i get a seat im fine.

    now im taking night classes so i just drive in.

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    • #3
      KK, I hope everything goes well with your surgery and wish you a speedy recovery.

      The only time I have taken pubic transportation is when I was in D.C. We took the metro train the entire time. There was a connection place at Pentagon City Mall which was just a couple of blocks away from our hotel. So, we would walk there and get on the metro and it carried us to all of the events. It was a life saver, but it did take us a couple of days to get the hang of switching lines to get to places. I wish we had that where I live, I would use it everyday!
      It was clean, as I remember, you couldn't eat, drink or smoke on them and those are the main things that will make places dirty. It was outdated though, the carpet and decor was like the 1970's burnt orange, mustard yellow, and avacodo green. Other than that, is was #1!
      In valor there is hope - Tacitus

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      • #4
        Public transportation here is a total JOKE. My son can't drive. I can't tell you what a hardship that puts on him and us. Luckily, he has managed to find some car pools at work but they aren't always reliable. The Bus system has ONE BUS that comes out to the beach....at 5 am. My son would have to be up by 4 and walk a mile to the buss stop to catch a bus that would take him to work.....when his day starts either at 8 am or 10 pm (Varying schedules).
        There isn't another bus til midafternoon. We live at the beach.
        They did start a project called Dial a Ride for disabled people. But this is more for the physically disabled. My son just can't drive. This program is also a joke. My son tried it twiceand both times called me to get him because he was goning to be late for work. Seems like the rides show up when the drivers feel like it. Another time my son tried it, I again got called. It was taking so much timne to get disabled people on and off the bus (not their fault, of course), he was going to be late to work again.
        Recently, a man took Dial a Ride to church. He was disabled and they were to come pick him up at a certain time. They never showed and everyone had left church because he assured them Dial a Ride would be thre. The poor man managed to get himself up out of his chair and slide into a pew to sleep all night. A pastor found him the next morning, horrified that this poor disabled man had been left all night.
        The public transportation center in our city is a total joke. But they can come up wih millions for a new stadiun for the football team!
        I contacted the Epilepsy Foundation and they are trying to get a grant to get transportation for those with epilepsy that can't drive so they can get to work.
        It's really a shame....and our city couldn't care less.

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        • #5
          I live in LA, and as line from the Missing Persons song from the 80's goes, "Nobody walks in LA." However, when I've visited cities with decent public transport (meaning a good subway and/or trolley system), I have made it a point to try to use it.

          In cases such as San Francisco or Washington DC, I like to stay in a hotel in the suburbs (where it's less expensive) and take the subway into town.

          With London, for a tourist public transport is an absolute must. Traffic absolutely SUCKS, parking if you can find it is horribly expensive, and just try to negotiate streets that were laid out like this. Plus, the "Tube" (subway), the red double-decker buses, and the black taxis are tourist attractions in themselves.

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          • #6
            Katey, good luck with the surgery. i hope everything gets taken care of and you feel great again.

            i also think public transportation is very confusing. i think the more you use it the more comfortable you are with it. i love going on the Speedline from Jersey into Philly, like to the TLA. but i've always gone with someone who knows what the hell they're doing! lol

            i think they could make it easier and should think of the people that have never used it before, or rarely do.

            we only have NJ Transit bus service down here where i live, and the people i know who use it do really like it.
            "You did what you knew how to do...and when you knew better, you did better." ~~Maya Angelou

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            • #7
              Thanks for the well wishes everyone.

              JB,

              This morning when I went to the trolley stop, if I didn't ask someone, I would have gotten on the wrong trolley and ended up at the mall. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have crossed those very same trolley tracks, but never paid any attention to them at all. I hope I never have to again either!

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              • #8
                quote:
                Originally posted by Sig220Man:
                With London, for a tourist public transport is an absolute must. Traffic absolutely SUCKS, parking if you can find it is horribly expensive, and just try to negotiate streets that were laid out like this.

                That's a little too confusing for me, Siggy. I'd be lost and end up on the wrong side of town for sure. Guess having no sense of direction could account for that.

                From reading all of your posts, I see that you've traveled quite a bit. Where was your favorite place you've traveled to?

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                • #9
                  I have not used public transportation here in the U.S., only heard stories.

                  The first time I ever used public transportation was in Paris. Arrived at the train station, got a map for their subway, and already had one of the city. Figured out where on the map the hotel was, and then made my way to the platform. Their maps are incredibly easy to use! I never got off on a wrong stop, or took the wrong train. And it was dirt cheap! I think we could learn a thing or two from the Europeans about public transportation.

                  I'd have to say they were very clean in general. After we exited the train one time, I was mentioning the strong chemical-like smell in that car. That's when my son told me the kid next to him was spraying paint into a paper bag and then huffing it.

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                  • #10
                    When we went to Washington, we were VERY impressed at the public transportation system. The only time we had to use our car was to park it in the subway parking lot and we stayed quite a distance from Washington.

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                    • #11
                      Dear Snookums(AKA TASTYKAKES)
                      I have the option of riding for free-armed with a weapon-I would pay the $15 dollars- its less headache and frustration. Where is the Doctor located and I may be able to provide you with a less expensive parking area.
                      Big-T Coming Thru A friend will bail you out when you get locked-up. A buddy will be sittin' next to ya in the cell saying "man we really F'd up"!!

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                      • #12
                        T-bone,

                        You are a sweetie! Thanks for the offer. Without a doubt, I will take you up on it. Parking in Philly sucks!

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                        • #13
                          Europe and cities on the east coast seem to have better public transportation that I've noticed. Out here on the west coast, we're definatly a more car-centric society...
                          Concerning the difference between man and the jackass: some observers hold that there isn't any. But this wrongs the jackass.
                          -Mark Twain

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                          • #14
                            Big-T,

                            Forgot to tell you, the doc is down at Jefferson. Ya help with the parking, and lunch is on me next time I see ya.

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                            • #15
                              quote:
                              Originally posted by kateykakes:
                              From reading all of your posts, I see that you've traveled quite a bit. Where was your favorite place you've traveled to?

                              Having visited every single state west of the Rockies at one time or another, plus Washington DC, plus Canada between Victoria and Winnipeg, I still feel my most memorable vacations were the ones to the UK.

                              Of course, that now means quite a few Canadians are gonna be mad at me! [Eek!]

                              [ 10-19-2002, 04:04 AM: Message edited by: Sig220Man ]

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