Back on the road

Hey guys! I haven’t been on here for a while and I apologize for that, a lot of work for college has had me tied down, but hopefully I can now start to post weekly blogs.

Now what inspired me to come back? Seeing this picture. Sometimes a single image can tie together a complete idea, and render words useless. My blog is about making people appreciate the beauty which can exist on public transport, and this really emphasizes the delicacy which can exist on our own pavements and streets.

I wish i could say that it was me who created it, but unfortunately that honor belongs to another, and I’ll provide the link at the end of the blog if you are interested. Just remember that there are so many people who use public transport. We pass the same landscapes over and over again, but as this artist shows, only some of us ever really see them. Take a second to notice what is around you. You won’t be disappointed.

Keep checking this blog for more ways to Trump the Tube :)

http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?q=london+tube+sunset+beautiful&um=1&hl=en&biw=1044&bih=732&tbm=isch&tbnid=dIXvq6fmFaUobM:&imgrefurl=http://intuitionsofanafterthought.tumblr.com/&docid=IPQ5vTntuwqarM&imgurl=http://27.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_l7k0dzdvdr1qz7t0xo1_500.jpg&w=500&h=679&ei=qnYRT-rlMoKBhQe8qcDHCQ&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=157&sig=113786633216279806996&page=1&tbnh=133&tbnw=98&start=0&ndsp=12&ved=1t:429,r:3,s:0&tx=68&ty=67

Canary Wharf’s escalators to the pearly gates. This is a magnificant station. Was here only a week ago, loved it :)

Canary Wharf’s escalators to the pearly gates. This is a magnificant station. Was here only a week ago, loved it :)

Just a small note…

The amount of blogs i am making may decrease due to an increase in school work, so i will probably keep posts down to once a week. Don’t worry though londoners, i haven’t abandoned you! I will post as much as i can :)

Keep checking this blog for more ways to trump the tube! :)

For all the people who think London’s underground is bad, this is how some people deal with packed trains in Japan…

For all the people who think London’s underground is bad, this is how some people deal with packed trains in Japan…

Top ways to trump the tube- Don’t be the donkey

Don’t ever let people make you the donkey. That basically means that if you can help it, don’t let others make you the person between everyone else and the doors, the ‘Ass’ of the carriage. Get out of that position using whatever methods you can. Being trapped there leads to dangerous consequences.

I experienced this torture only a week ago. Travelling back from a journalist summer school, I willingly stood near the doors when I saw that there was no space big enough to stand in without having to ask people to move. I stood talking to a new friend, unsuspecting that the tube had pulled up to London Bridge. I didn’t hear the doors open. I didn’t hear the peoples’ noises outside. I did hear his footsteps. When i turned to face the man my heart sank. There stood a huge Manchester City supporting Goliath, and I a six foot David, was scared. I muttered under my breath over and over again ‘please don’t get on’. The eclipse of his shadow beckoned, and the whole carriage fell into darkness. I think i must have felt how Indiana Jones did when that boulder rolled after him, but here there was no escape. people seemed to push me forward and back away, as if offering a sacrifice, so that the man might spare them.

The tube was full. There was no way his body could fit in the space between me and the door. It couldn’t. He pushed my body back with his stomach as he stepped on. All the people on the carriage got pushed together. We were heaved by this one man up against the far side. A collected gasp of shock could be heard, and then the beep of closing doors. At our expense, at my expense, he had got onto the tube. I hadn’t known my new friend longer than two days, but I was now pushed up against him, breathing down his neck. With my head bent i was trying very hard to ignore the cramp that had just gripped me, to not look up. The searing pain was worth avoiding the most awkward of kisses.

Never let anyone make you the donkey of the carriage; put you between the doors and everyone else. Your able bodied future depends on it.

Keep checking this blog for more ways to trump the tube!

This could only happen on London’s underground!

Top ways to trump the tube- watch ‘the heat’

Seats are avoided for only a few, rare reasons. The most common being because of the annoying person sitting next to them, whether it is the girl who’s music is so loud the whole carriage sways to it as she plays her air guitar with her teeth, or the old man with a ‘minor’ twitch who you could swear was more than a little interested in your boyfriend… Other than those exceptions, seats on the tube are known as a coveted commodity. An extraordinary event happens when a seat is vacated on a busy tube, something i like to call ‘the heat’.

When a seat becomes available on a packed carriage, heads turn and eyes bare down. The carriage throbs as everyone moves forward. The mum starts to swing her nun chuck “because mums are heroes” Iceland shopping bags, and the old man has his walking stick pointing menacingly towards the seat. Women are ready to pounce from their handbags. It’s one of the fiercest examples of checked, politically-correct aggression there is The heat directed towards that seat is unbelievable. You can always tell if the person getting up from the seat has been using the underground for a long time or not, because If they have they will look back in anticipation at what will happen. Its a scary moment. I remember once at this point a little boy calmly walked over to the seat and sat down, sucking a lolly pop and looking up at the bemused carriage. The walking sticks were sheathed once again, the bags brought down from their orbit. The carriage didn’t quite know how to react, with the would-be warriors having a mix of anger and admiration for the boy. Whatever happens there is always a deep respect for the winner. But be warned, in this fight all bets are off, dirty fighting is the norm, and girls know it…

So for a top way to trump the tube, please watch the heat. Its entertaining, fun, and it being aware of it makes the whole situation a lot more funny.

keep checking this blog for more ways to trump the tube!

Top ways to trump the tube- fall in love with it

My love affair with London’s underground started almost two years ago. It is a love situated around a very important day for me. It is rooted in a moment that carries a lot of emotional and sentimental weight. From that time I have never really been able to get over the tube. Many Londoners condemn it for its rush hour, or complain about its rising prices, but I can’t bring myself to hate what is essentially the soul of my city. The first time I really used the underground was to meet my girlfriend of almost two years, for the first time.

We had been talking for a couple of months. I hadn’t met her yet, so we finally set a date to meet at London Waterloo. I didn’t pay much attention to the underground as I travelled there, and I rushed from entrance to exit whenever I could, even though I was already early. I took nothing in, and arriving before her at Waterloo station, I waited. Now they say that falling in love is cliché, overplayed and over exaggerated, but in that moment of seeing her, everything seemed to fall into equilibrium and harmony. Suddenly the gushes of noise from trains pulling away from the station didn’t sound so mechanical or ugly. Suddenly the people brushing past me as they ran weren’t annoying, but part of the busy city I loved. Everything got louder; and I became more aware of what was around me. I saw the underground for all the benefits that many take for granted. The ability to be anywhere you want, the opportunity it gave to join people from all over the city, the possibility of meetings which could have never happened before. I held Katerina in my arms, in a moment that was the epitome of all those advantages, all those gifts that the tube could give, and she was beautiful. The underground was for me in those moments, and still is, a great joiner of people. It is a champion of the cooperation and togetherness that makes the most ethnically diverse city in the world the kindest one. I realised that day that as I had fallen in love with Katerina, I had fallen in love with London’s underground as well.

It is almost two years down the line, and I still feel in debt to London’s underground for what it has given me. I think I always will.

Keep checking this blog for more ways to trump the tube :)

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