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To never use a train again?

(52 Posts)
LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:39:35

I rarely use the train - we live in a small town, so I either walk closer distances, or drive further away.

DD loves trains, and has never been on a proper one. I had to go into a city today, so decided to take the train.

The way in, this morning, wasn't too bad. We got on, collapsed the pushchair, sat down, and DD (nearly 2) loved it (kept telling other passengers to bounce and beep their noses etc. but people either ignored her or laughed with her). Got off (no help with pushchair, which is fine although I would have offered if I saw a heavily (37 weeks) pregnant lady with a toddler and pushchair).

The way back was an entirely different matter. Today has been swelteringly hot, which didn't help. The lift to the platform didn't work, so I had to drag the pushchair down the stairs, then run for the train, and we were the last on. The train was really busy, with people standing everywhere. I managed to get DD on with the pushchair, get her out and collapse it. The air vents weren't working so everyone very hot, and it was very crowded. We had to stand pushed against the door, holding on each time the door opened so we didn't fall out. I had to carry DD, as she was getting trampled. She got quite upset. It was so horrible.

Thankfully, a lovely girl, who was also standing, spotted a free seat after about half an hour, and stopped anyone else from using so that I could. She held DD for me while I sorted out the pushchair into a convenient place against the wall, then helped me into my seat. Then at every stop she moved the pushchair out of the way so people could get off more easily. I was so grateful for her help, she was so lovely.

So, this isn't a whinge about people not letting me sit down, I'm not all that surprised. More I am wondering how people put up with this, and how they deal with it if they rely on public transport. DD and I are still recovering from the ordeal, a couple of hours later! AIBU to avoid trains in the future?

purplepidjin Fri 03-Jun-11 17:44:35

Yanbu to avoid them if you don't need to use them

Ya a teensy bit u for picking friday night rush hour in half term though! It's been boiling here too (tourist area) and I'm thanking my lucky stars I didn't have to use one today!

LilQueenie Fri 03-Jun-11 17:44:36

sounds like your return journey was during peak time.

MichaelaS Fri 03-Jun-11 17:45:19

YANBU. I changed my commute to a longer bus based one because I could no longer hack the underground in a morning. WHY are we prepared to travel at a density which we deem illegal for farm animals!?

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:45:54

It was 3pm, I didn't think that would be peak time, but to be fair I had forgotten about half term.

Having said that, I didn't see any other children!

TheMonster Fri 03-Jun-11 17:47:09

You picked a very hot day, whilst heavily pregnant, to go on the train when you didn't actually need to. YABU.

MonkeyTastic Fri 03-Jun-11 17:48:01

YANBU to never get the train again. Especially not a commuter train with a buggy and toddler ffs!

What planet are you from?! Stop press: commuter trains are very busy!

"How do they put up with it?" What? Coming home from work? Easily, especially with no buggies in the way...

worraliberty Fri 03-Jun-11 17:48:49

3pm on a Friday is heading into peak time as lots of businesses like to close up early.

It's not a big deal to me..even reading your OP but that's because I don't drive so I'm used to it.

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:51:33

I did need to get somewhere... I could have driven but it seems wrong to do so when there is a train almost from door to door.

It just seems so wrong that it is more expensive AND more hassle to do something that is better for the environment. sad

millie30 Fri 03-Jun-11 17:52:37

Not sure what your point is OP? You got a seat and a lovely woman helped you during your journey. I'd say that was a result for a commuter train on a friday afternoon!

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:52:51

Do commuters really leave work at 3 on a Friday? I didn't realise, I certainly never have done.

headfairy Fri 03-Jun-11 17:53:07

yanbu to have hated your train experience. I don't blame you, but I think it's such a shame that our travelling experience is so grim in this country. I do a 45 min train journey to work 3 times a week off peak (10am) and I never ever get a seat, the train is always at least 5 minutes late (meaning I miss connections) and it's either stifflingly hot or freezing cold. Never at the right time.

At a time when petrol prices are making driving too expensive for many it's such a shame our public transportation system is so shoddy.

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:54:30

my point is that it doesn't need to be like this. Surely things can be improved?

worraliberty Fri 03-Jun-11 17:57:35

Improved at what cost? A lost of commuters are already struggling to pay their way to work and back.

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 17:59:24

Why is it so expensive? Are trains in continental Europe subsidised by the government? Is that what we're missing out on? Or are there too many trains running close to empty at less busy times that could be put to better use at busy times?

troisgarcons Fri 03-Jun-11 18:00:00

TBH - if you are going to get on a train at peak times where it's a sardine tine full of commuter then you must be a bit touched in the head

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 18:02:22

OK, we have established that I hadn't considered 3pm to be peak time, I stand corrected. (Odd how 8am was fine?)
I'm not sure I need your assessment of my mental health though thanks. I don't know why you are trying to upset me, I haven't been rude to anyone or anything, I'm just shocked at how cramped trains get.

Goblinchild Fri 03-Jun-11 18:08:53

I miss British Rail. I thought this was going to be a thread about how you'd got on the wrong train for your ticket, and should have caught the one 10 minutes later and had to pay an extra £200.
I'm sorry you had a bad journey, but pick your travel times better and introduce your DD to the idea of trains as a good thing.
Both of my teens love the train, we use it a lot to get to our nearest city and up to London. Railcards are great, just avoid peak times and take food and a drink.

MmaIvvy Fri 03-Jun-11 18:10:13

I think people are being a bit rude OP. I wouldn't have known that 3pm is rush hour either on a friday.
I get what you mean about public transport being so expensive yet so crap so why would anyone want to change from using cars - yet when I've been abroad I've quite enjoyed using trains as every day transport.

purplepidjin Fri 03-Jun-11 18:11:46

Unfortunately, you're trying to rationally debate a political and social problem on a forum where the emphasis is on the personal.

Yanbu to think this is a national problem which needs addressing. Yabu to expect people to focus away from the specifics you've posted wink

ohanotherone Fri 03-Jun-11 18:12:03

I have always hated trains since I was stuck in a train with swearing scary football fans and a blocked toilet, even though I told the guard that I was going to move carriages when we stopped at Milton Keynes, it took so long to get off that the train left me at Milton Keynes, the guard shrugged his shoulders as the train pulled out. I was fit and healthy and had no luggage.

My disabled mum tried to get off at her station once but was too slow so ended up having to do a 50 mile round trip for the train to drop her off on the way back. DESPITE MY SISTER TELLING THE GUARD THAT SHE NEEDED EXTRA TIME TO GET OFF By which time the drunks were out and "helpfully" helped her over the bridge to her car. Helpful but scary!

YANBU.

headfairy Fri 03-Jun-11 18:12:33

I miss British rail too Goblin... it was privatised a long time ago, memories are fading, but I don't remember trains being this bad. Certainly not this expensive.

OP the saddest upshot of how bad our commuter trains is that outside of London 71% of people commute by car. All that pollution being poured in to the atmosphere purely because our trains (and for that matter buses) are rubbish.

Goblinchild Fri 03-Jun-11 18:12:46

Not every day, but 3pm on a Friday does tend to be busy, especially if you are on a commuter route. I've met lovely people on the underground and on trains when I was lugging a buggy, a baby and a backpack. I got a lot of help from random strangers around London.
Glad you met a nice one too OP.

LoopyLoopsBettyBoops Fri 03-Jun-11 18:13:02

Thank you Mma. I have no idea why this has upset me so much. I guess I'm just tired and pregnant.

Out of interest, what time would have been suitable to get a train home? I couldn't have taken an earlier train, and had to be where I went. If I didn't have the car option, what should I have done? Wait until the evening to come home?

Goblinchild Fri 03-Jun-11 18:15:54

I found the fast trains through were less crowded than the stopping trains, but I was lucky to have a choice.
When we go up to London, we leave there around 7pm, but with a small child you probably had very little choice other than to choose a different day.

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