Thursday, May 17, 2007

Oh Thursday

Time is moving so quickly (although for some reason, Blogger isn't, what's with the delay between typing and appearing on the screen? Come on, internet connection, I am not in the mood for this.) I can't believe it's Thursday already, although yesterday felt like two or three days, as I spent 6 hours of it on a train to and from Washington DC for a 3 hour meeting. Worthwhile? About an hour of it was. But it exhausted me.

On one end, I had to wake at 4 to get to the train station, and my ever-eager-to-please body clock did me a favor by waking me at 3 and not letting me doze again in case I missed the alarm clock. Nice!

On the other end, heavy thunderstorms slowed us entering a station just on the Jersey side of the river, and some kind of engine computer malfunction followed (this, moments after I wrote to a friend that at least I could be assured that the train would be in on time, as this was the Acela, not the annoying Amtrak up the Hudson, which is notoriously off schedule, as much as I love the journey.) We wound up sitting for 20 minutes, but worse was that after, the doors stopped opening, so at each subsequent stop, the conductors had to run from car to car pulling emergency cords to open the doors. Yeah, I don't know. We were bunched up near the door in Penn Station for another ten minutes, with a conductor who apparently misunderstood the earlier instructions we'd all heard on his walkie-talkie ("you'll need to pull the emergency cord at the doors") and was futilely radioing in for instructions on whether he should, in fact, pull the emergency cord. I was in the tight corridor between bathrooms and tried to summon up a sufficiently dire sense of claustrophobia ("what would happen if I just freaked out right now?") but I was too tired even for that.

And then, my favorite part! This happened after my last train journey from DC: a long line for cabs in the pouring rain, and the puzzling dilemma of whether to stick it out in line and at least have a quick direct trip to my front door? Or slip into the nearby subway, and risk an equally long (but dry) wait on the platform (more frustrating, because at least in the taxi line, you can count how many people are ahead of you and estimate when you'll be rescued), followed by a wet three block walk home in the downpour.

I chose door #2, and the train played right along: a nearly fifteen minute wait, marked only by my slamming my wet umbrella into one of the metal girders mumbling "Fuck, fuck, fuck," in frustration. (Or maybe it wasn't "mumbling." I had my iPod on.)

But finally, home!


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