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Going Underground by Ann Treacy
March 29, 2008, 12:18 pm
Filed under: London

If I could spend my whole vacation on the Tube, I would. I love the London Underground. I love the fact that you can get from one place to another with very little hassle. I love watching the range of people who take the train.

Unlike the bus in Dublin – loads of people from all walks of life take the Underground- because the traffic on the road is generally so bad that it’s slower to drive or take a taxi.

It took about 2 minutes of looking at the Underground Map for it all to come back to me. It’s like a great game: you’re in Fulham Broadway. Only the District line runs through Fulham. You need to get to Camden on the Northern Line. What is the quickest/easiest way to get from A to B.

To make the challenge even more fun for me I had a couple of barriers added to the route planning. Several of the main lines were shut during the Easter break for engineering improvements. Some of the closures were well marked; some weren’t. Also Patrick’s mom won’t go down escalators. Up is OK; down is a no go. I won’t go beyond the second rung of a ladder so I say nothing about her lifestyle choice here.

One particularly challenging moment came in Great Portland Street. We had all just gotten off a bus tour. Patrick and the girls were woken up to get off. So he was carrying Aine. We couldn’t get to the Bakerloo or Jubilee lines because that required a down escalator. We asked the young and huge Underground worked what our options were. He didn’t seem to understand that walking the 5 minutes to the next station was not an option for us. So, I found a way for us to take the one train that didn’t require an escalator, avoid the closed lines and get home in fewer than 4 trains! I was dismayed when the next station we visited didn’t have an elevator either – but they closed one of the 3 escalators so that Patrick’s mom could walk down to the platform.

You may think that I’m being sarcastic but I’m not when I say I love the Tube so much that this was all kinda fun for me. (I may have been alone on that one.)

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