Commuter Etiquette: Chapter One – Pedigree
One of the best things about London is the public transport system. Whenever I go to another city, it inevitably comes up short. New York is achingly confusing – why do so many different lines use the same platform?! Sydney and Boston are meagre in comparison; Berlin is a maze of colours and you seem to need all sorts of different tickets for a simple journey; and Paris, whilst highly regarded and a close challenger, has too many homeless people taking refuge and depositing their waste.
The tube is excellent because no matter where you are in the vast sprawl in London, if you can get yourself to a tube station you aren’t lost. You can find your way. And it’s simple – apart from the Circle/District line shared platforms, in general the lines have separate platforms, and the colour coding makes it easy to track where you are and, more importantly, where you’re going. In case you were wondering, my favourite line is the Jubilee, followed by the Bakerloo. I avoid the Central and Victoria at all costs, and only take the Northern when absolutely necessary.
Admittedly, the lack of tube coverage in south London is a serious oversight and problem (although that looks set to change with the Bakerloo line extension), but, thankfully, we have the overground trains to reach London’s nether regions.
You will undoubtedly, definitely, certainly hear people moaning about public transport in London. I have been using the trains and tubes my entire life, and I currently have an hour home-to-work commute (at least) to add on to every working day, twice a day. I’ve been traversing the tracks my entire adult life. And in that time I’ve observed all sorts of hilarious scenes, endured unbelievable delays and upheavals, and become fully fluent in “commuter etiquette”.
So, I thought I’d add a little feature to Cosmopolondon, since commuting and public transport is such a big part of the ol’ Big Smoke, so I can impart the commuter way of life to the ignorant masses. You’ll never feel like you’re being glared at by that suit again.
Note: this is meant to be a tongue in cheek feature. Remember, the best tube/train drivers are the ones who don’t take themselves too seriously…