Behold The Bane Of My Journalistic Adventuring: “R” Train Travel

There is never a doubt in my mind that I get to endeavor upon a number of interesting things in pursuing my passion as music photographer and journalist but after the evening is all said and done and the goodbye’s have been said, it’s time to make the dreaded trek out to my neck of the woods in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.  A lovely region that is most generally accessible by the “R” train line.  This local train is reliable during the daytime but when the later evening hours happen upon us the story is an entirely different one.   While only a good 45 minutes at best out of the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple, depending on the hour you are heading back to base, it can take upwards of two hours.  This happened to me the other night and since the camera was being examined in its bag I decided to use the snappy Sony to snag an image of this cruel reminder of the state of affairs I was in tonight.   Yes, the train runs here but “except” for late nights.

The journey involves getting whatever you can get to DeKalb Avenue where you will then need to switch for a now running local “N” Train.  The “N” is not too bad a ride when it is running on time but there have been instances where I was waiting at DeKalb avenue for over thirty minutes.  When that happens it downright sucks.  You’ll then get off this “N” at 59th Street which lets you change for the hopefully arriving soon “R” train, but let me tell you that it very seldom is a timely thing once you get there.  It’s almost like a black hole for time in the mind of the NYC commuter.   The “R” train now runs as a shuttle train and goes from 95th Street to 36th and back.  It does this to be able to switch sides but it really would be better if it just went from 95th to 59th and back but it does not always do that.

The MTA's Version of Purgatory

You might think my labeling 59th Street as Purgatory as a little unfair but your attitude will change if you ever find yourself waiting for more than forty five minutes to go a mere four stops (or even less as some people need to do).  I tell you if I didn’t have more than a two mile walk and it being the dead of the night that I would walk the distance and never worry about it.  Alas I do not have that luxury and must wait it out.  Sigh.

The Lonliness Of The Long Distance Commuter

While there are usually other travelers stranded with you, there are going to be some rare occasions where the train is as empty as you see in the photo above.  This particular shot for example was one of those nights but I admit even this is a rare thing to find happening.   I usually emerge from the car like a zombie hitting the streets with several other folks who look at hungry for sleep as I do.    Depending on how tired I am at this time, the glowing beacon that is the never closing Dunkin Donuts just across the street sometimes draws me in for a late, late coffee.

At Last!!!!

It’s seldom that I will actually stick around the Dunkin spot with said coffee, unless there are guests joining me who needed the couch for the evening.  Usually its just back to the site headquarters for some now much needed shut eye.  Hopefully a few hours sleep will find me ready to Rock & Roll again once more.

Comment (1)

  1. Rys

    Great article!! Nighttime travel on MTA is always nightmare fuel for me!

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