Sunday, 24 January 2010

Never-ending Search

The quest is eternal and never-ending. Even when not the pressing business of the day, always it is lurking there at the back of the mind. The mind is forever probing and searching, pondering alternates and conjuring up new possibilities from the existing information. There must be a way, there must be a way, there must be a way - the unchanging litany that has echoed across the brain on and on through the years. For man must always consider that question to which he craves the ultimate answer:- how do I shave those extra few minutes of my commute?

I've been a commuter now for more than a third of my life* and am a lifelong user of public transport so, in my mind, there's always a mental tube/train map that's trying to the quickest route across London. Because, by whatever means you choose, by whichever means you travel and however far you're going, getting across London takes a minimum of an hour. It doesn't seem to matter where or how, your minimum travel time is an hour.

It's not just about the quickest route, either. Over time, you begin to develop your own personal set of criteria which the perfect journey must meet. It also has to have the least number of changes. It has to be by these methods of transport in order of preference:- train, tube, bus, DLR (the toy train). Plus a whole heap of other tiny little preferences that are slowly added in to the quest to find that perfect public transport journey.

It's a hopeless windmill-tilting quest, of course. The idea of a perfect public transport journey is a thing of mythical proportions. I'll still keep searching, though. Like winning the lottery, one day, it could happen...


* That's not a fun stat that makes you feel all fuzzy and cosy. That's a lot of bottled up annoyance and resentment, simmering away on a daily basis...


2 comments:

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Isn't London pretty fricking huge, though? Can one drive across it in less than an hour? Given traffic restrictions and such.

That Baldy Fella said...

Well, yeah, true. it is big but it just feels like whatever journey you make by whatever means takes at least an hour. Or maybe I only go places that are an hour away. Moral of the story - I should stay in more.