Lost Like a Tourist

Alright.  I admit it.  I had to ask for directions today on the subway.  I’m not terribly proud of it either.

We had company in town this weekend, and went downtown to the Seaport, etc.  We were going to take the 2,3 down, but that got all messed up because uptown, the trains stopped running for n reason.

So we transferred to the A.  Got to West 4th and it switched over to the 6th Avenue line with no warning.  Had to backtrack on that one.

I tried to ask a transit worker what my alternatives were.  I walked away before I said some choice words about the worker’s lack of mastery of the English language.

Eventually, we did make it over to the World Trade Center instead.  Then we just walked from there.

Now I know why I don’t go downtown on the weekend.

8 thoughts on “Lost Like a Tourist

  1. Presuming by 6th Avenue Line you mean Houston Street, you could have transferred to the Lex at Broadway-Lafayette or continued on to Jay and transferred to an uptown A or C.

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  2. I live downtown, and the downtown subway insanity isn’t too difficult to figure out. You just have to check mta.info in advance before heading out so you know which subway lines are running local, or not running, or running to 14th street and then heading back uptown. And since almost all the lines converge around Fulton Street, you just switch up.

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  3. SUBWAYBlogger, You would have been better off just looking at a map, carry one with you. Was that person you asked directions from an actual station agent or was it just some other transit worker? There are a lot of non station agents also whose command of the english language is not so great (the russians, indians,etc)

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  4. Yeah, I was on the A train this weekend as well and the announcement said that the A train was running on the F line. In addition the signs in the station also said something about NO E trains running. I was trying to get to Broadway Nassau, so I ended up taking the E train, which WAS running to West 4th to the E train station World Trade Center which was close enough to the A train Broadway Nassau station that I could walk over.

    You can carry a map all you want but if the announcements and the signs in the train station aren’t coordinated then a map will do you no good.

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  5. I had the same thing happen to me this summer, coming from the Seaport coincidentally. Going downtown was fine, coming back uptown was a big mess due to track work. There was a group of 5 of us who asked a track worker, who luckily spoke english, & we were like a pack of lost souls trekking through the passage way to catch another train, to transfer to another train, etc.
    Don’t nanny nanny boo him, it happens to the best of us due to track work on the weekends.

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  6. It’s kind of an embarrassment that we don’t have route information displayed in every station in NYC. It reminds me of being in Amsterdam 20 years ago seeing that all train stations and outdoor train stops had displays indicating how many minutes until the next 3 trains that were going to be stopping there and their train number. They have that kind of display for NJ Transit in Secaucus.

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  7. Lots of American cities have platform displays with current route information. We could have a contest for teenage programmers to see who could write a better program that could take a touch sensitive map, and a starting point A and an ending point B and give route info.

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