First thing that sucks: of all the trains that travel to Far Rockaway, there are three “direct trains,” i.e. those trains that you don’t have to change trains at Jamaica for. That in and of itself is reprehensible, but even worse is that the latest of these is at 6:02. So only people that leave work at around 5:30-5:45 can take a direct train home? I’m sure that’s a lot of people, but that also excludes a lot of people (like me) who almost never leave that early. There are a lot of professionals that have longer hours, and commute regularly on later trains, that live in the towns on the Far Rockaway line. And we all have to put up with insanely crowded Huntington or West Hempstead or Babylon trains every night on the way home. I can’t beleive that it doesn’t make sense to add one or two later “direct” trains to Far Rockaway. Trust me, they would be full, every night.
Second thing that sucks: there is just an absoutely abhorrent paucity of trains. After the aformentioned 6:02, there’s a 6:27, a 6:55 and the next train is 7:54. That’s right, after 7, the trains go once an hour. Are you effing kidding me? That’s ridiculous. Keep in mind, the MTA defines “Peak” as ending at 8. That means by their own definition, they provide one train an hour to Far Rockaway, that isn’t even direct, during rush hour. That’s so insanely stupid, I’m getting madder and madder as I write this. By contrast, there are eight trains to Great Neck between the FR 6:02 and 7:54. EIGHT! When Far Rockaway has two (6:27 and 6:55). And after 8 (the end of “Peak”) the trains run every half hour, not every hour. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found myself able and ready to leave work at 7, only to realize that there’s no train remotely close. So I sit at work and fiddle for another 35 minutes before it’s time to leave. Or I blog. Like right now. It’s ridiculous that there are times that I acutally take the train on a different line and take a taxi home from another stop (which costs me $14, with tipping the driver), just because, even with going so out of my way, I’ll get home sooner.
Third thing that sucks: the smell from the bathrooms that permeates the entire car on the “old” trains. I can’t breathe in bathroom cars. The whole thing makes me nauseas.
There’s more, like the that fact that if someone in Woodside sneezed to hard, it throws them into crazy delays, or the fact that every other week there some sort of problem in one of the tubes in Penn Station, or the fact that while trains are supposed to have set tracks, 2 times out of 5, “there’s a track change for this evening,” but I don’t want to take too much time. If I miss the 7:54, it’s a long wait until the next train.