Overresponsiveness and public transport


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Traveling by public transport is not my favorite activity. Once you’re on the train or tram, it is indeed relaxed going from A to B. Lovely with a book or reading the news, maybe a cup of coffee (if I had time to go get it). But before I get that far, the necessary stress has already built up and I have therefore become quite overresponsive by public transport. Am I the only one who is already worried at home about whether the tram/bus is leaving just before I reach the stop?

My partner Bart is very good at traveling by public transport. He doesn’t worry much about anything. That seems wonderful to me. If it is 12 minutes from front door to the train platform, he will leave 12 minutes before the train leaves. That sometimes results in missing the train, but I don’t think it bothers him much. I however, am happy with my car and don’t like to go to an appointment by public transport.

The other day, I took an unplanned trainjourney, on a route that was new to me. Lovely, I must say, not to have to pay attention to the road. I therefore had the opportunity to share my troubles with a friend via WhatsApp. I had a minor car crash. Through no fault of my own, but that was of no use to me at the time. Promptly I missed my transfer (I didn’t know that Duivendrecht comes so soon after Amstel) and I was at Bijlmer Arena station. I ran to the metro to get back to Duivendrecht as quickly as possible. ‘As soon as possible’ must at least go through the checking out gate from the train and checking in at the metro. I knew that too… What I didn’t know is that at this stop you can only check out on the platform at the metro, not at the next platform, two stairs down where I wanted to get my connecting ride. On my next unplanned public transport journey, I will remember to put deodorant in my bag…

Today I have to take the tram. I walk out of my neighborhood and from then on I can see if a tram is coming around the bend in the distance and if I should run. I can’t see yet if it’s mine, because I need number 7 and the 3 is also passes here. But to be able to see it I do have to walk in the road, between the traffic and the parked cars. I can’t see very well from the sidewalk.

Just before I get to the tram stop, I look back. A tram is coming… let it be the 7! It is indeed; well planned today. Although… I left home on time, because of course I take into account that I may have to wait fifteen minutes for the next tram. So this now means I’m fifteen minutes early for my appointment.

Funny that, when I said goodbye at my previous job, my colleagues said I always seem so calm and how nice that must be, to be so calm. ‘Seem’ is the right word. I rarely experience this calmness myself. Well, I’m glad I come across that way anyway…

I can put away my stress about public transport. I am getting on the tram because I have an appointment with the garage, where I will pick up my fully repaired car. A nice relief, which is only partly spoiled when I get presented the bill. For the time being, I no longer have to worry about whether the tram is on time and whether I have enough deodorant with me. I can now start worrying about when the insurer of the responsible party will pay.

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Overresponsiveness and public transport

Traveling by public transport is not my favorite activity. Once you’re on the train or tram, it is indeed relaxed going from A to B.

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