When I was growing up, my dad commuted by train to Manhattan from the suburbs. I live in the suburbs of another city and work in a suburb that is 10 miles from my house. Recently I started taking the train to work. Better for the planet, gets me a brisk walk each day and time outdoors, and also can be paid for with pre-tax dollars - lots of positives here. And it gives me a short window to sit and enjoy my tea while reading a bit for grad school. Plus lots of people watching. Recently my twenty-four year old remarked to me that she feels like a grown up because she has a monthly pass to a parking garage - now I feel like a grown up because I'm taking the train to work like my dad!
The best thing about it so far has been the short walk between the train station and my office which is 8-10 minutes depending on how briskly I walk. First of all, it is fall, so the trees are beautiful. Second the weather has been fair. And third, it's balmy this week. There is something about being out in nature first thing in the morning that is soul nurturing. It is just a wonderful feeling. I love the outdoors and it connects me to my Creator. But I have found that a brief walk is also good for my brain - it gets my mind going. I always find new ideas and inspirations come to me while I am walking. So that is a huge benefit; what a way to start the day - invigorated, inspired, and intellectually awake.
The train is another story - going to work, there is a nice conductor, and the train is generally clean. And they announce the stops over the loud speaker as well as on a display monitor. Going home, they seldom announce the stops and it is dark and there does not seem to be a display monitor. How are we expected to find our way home? It's too dark to see the names of the stations, and those signs are not lit up. Yesterday all the passengers were asking each other - which station is this and fortunately someone knew. And I could see a few landmarks I recognized one stop before home. Safely home.