Wednesday, October 8, 2014

NYC Commuting 90 Minutes Later

After a trip to the emergency room two weeks ago, I followed some of the doctor’s advice about caffeine and “sleep hygiene,”  and now I’m going to work an hour and a half later every day than I had been for the last few years.

New York City is very, very different at 7:30am to 8:30am than it was at 6am to 7am…  So much busier.  So much noisier.  So much more chaos.

At 6am there was only one grocery store on my route with big trucks unloading, at 7:30am there’s business with deliveries all up and down the street between our apartment and the subway.

By 7:30am there are construction crews out blocking the roads and moving big equipment around, so no more just walking across the street once there’s a big enough break in traffic.  Not that there is a big enough break in traffic at 7:30am without a light or construction flagger to stop it, the cars are simply non-stop on the avenues.

Whereas I used to always get a seat on the subway, every time, often the only person on a bench, now I usually have to squeeze in to a crowded train and wait till a mass of people get off at Times Square to quickly grab a seat, feeling guilty because there’s still plenty of people standing up, and worried that I might be taking a seat someone who really needs it more than me could use.

On the 4 train in Brooklyn I used to sit with young 20-something school teachers who work at some schools near my office, a crowd that often grades papers or talks in nice, quiet conversational tones and has manners when we’re all heading to the same exits at the same time.  Now after 8am in Crown Heights, the trains are mostly full of rowdy school kids.

Fortunately, with the doctor-recommended change in sleeping habits, I don’t feel the desperate need to sleep on the train like I used to, so I can close my eyes to relax, but the noise and chaos isn't affecting me as much.

No comments:

Post a Comment