Thursday, April 10, 2008

My Super-Early Super-Long Delayed Commute This Morning

This has been a busy week at work. I needed to get into Boston early this morning.

I got up early (which is something Train Rider loathes to do) to get ready so I could take the P506 train in. The P506 train departs Grafton at 6:39 a.m. Much to my surprise, the P506 was canceled. When the next train, the P508, showed up it was two cars short. The P508 departs Grafton a 1/2 hour after the P506 at 7:09 a.m.. So after waiting more than a 1/2 hour, I had to ride on a train that was two cars short that needed to accommodate the riders from two trains.

Once I boarded the train, I noticed that passes were not checked and tickets were not created. Around Ashland, the conductors made an announcement that they spoke to dispatch (CSX I presume?) and obtained permission to have the train go express from the Framingahm station. So, even though the train was packed, it worked out well from a time perspective because we didn't have to stop at West Natick and Natick and deal with even more passengers.

We arrived to Back Bay Station at the P508's scheduled time of 8:17 a.m. I jumped off the train to take the Orange Line to work.

It is really sad when you've already had a long day and it isn't even 8:30 a.m. At least it is nice outside. The question is - will I be able to step out from my endless meetings to enjoy today's taste of spring?


Anonymous said...

A little perspective: You write somewhat as if you were the only one inconvenienced. The people east of Framingham had it much worse than you did. And all taxpayers in the state and eve more so in the MBTA district paid for the train operator's screw-up. And yet nobody in the whole affair has to live in a war zone.

Train Rider said...


Since I'm commuting into Boston from Grafton, my perspective does tend to focus on those of us who ride the Worcester line from stations west of Framingham. So I document my own experience.

Well, technically the P508 yesterday (Thurs., 4/10) only skipped the West Natick and Natick people, since it is normally supposed to be an express train from Natick.

If riders were getting off in West Natick or Natick, then yes, they were inconvenienced because they had to get off in Framingham and wait for the next train.

I would imagine the Wellesley and Newton riders were also inconvenienced because the p506 was canceled, but frankly, commuters from Framingham through the Newtons tend to have twice as many options for trains as Worcester through Ashland commuters anyway. They could have taken the P504, P510 or the P512.

I'm pretty sure that the P512 ended up stopping the Newtons to pick up those riders.

And regarding your comment that we do not live in a war zone - my father is retired from the US Military (which he served in for his entire career), I find your comment totally inappropriate. I do believe that we are fortunate to live in the United States. I've traveled to other areas of the world where people would be grateful to live our lives.

The purpose of this blog is to enable me to document both the joys and the frustrations of commuting to work. Since I live in Massachusetts in a MBTA district, I am paying the same taxes that residents who live closer to Boston pay. I feel like I deserve the same commuting options. And I would like to see more people use public transportation, as it helps cut down on traffic and it helps conserve our resources.

Thanks for visiting.

Train Rider