Well, two nights ago I took the bus for the first time in a long time. I was with four other friends as we were coming back from a seminar over at UBC. We waited and waited and waited…
As we waited, we had the schedule so we called the TransLink number to see what was going on with the buses. TransLink told us that a bus drives by every twenty minutes–we saw no bus. Mean while the group of waiting riders at the bus stop was now eight and growing.
Just to show you how much our lovely transit service system sucks here in the Vancouver & Fraser Valley, the bus broke-down along Marine Drive in Vancouver, and we waited over thirty minutes until the next bus arrived, but he was full and kept on going. The next bus barely had enough room for us, so we were crammed in there tight.
Because of the cramped environment on the bus, one of the women passengers I noticed looked very distressed. I noticed that the guy behind her was practically standing over her looking down her shirt! My friend Tina moved closer to the woman and started talking to her. This sort of helped the woman out as it intimated the guy behind her and he kept his distance after that. I guess everywhere there are perverts?
By the time we got to Surrey on the SkyTrain, the trip lasted 1 hour and twenty five minutes. We drove that same distance and did it in less than twenty-five minutes the week before–gas is not high enough to suffer this kind of transit chaos.
I was somewhat upset that the buses are still a shambles compared to when I last used the transit system as means to commute back and forth from work. Heck, I would be even willing to pay the $8.00 parking fee if I knew that the alternative was this?
Anyway, I did get home the same day. I parked at the Scott Road Park and Ride in Surrey and drove the rest of the way. But the lesson here is that unless I was, down and out, desolate and broke, no vehicle to drive, I would “then” take the bus. The British Columbian Transit / TransLink system still has a long ways yet of convincing me to park my vehicle in favour of the bus. I would pay fifty percent more to drive in order to avoid that chaos.
The point to my post here is that the conditions are still along ways off before people are willing to adjust thier driving habbits to meet our enviromental goals. Becuase of the distance between services, and the state of the transit system, including roads, the car still rules as the altimate way to commute.