Thursday, 2 October 2008

Magic of the metro

there are many reasons that i love the metro.

one of them is the fact that because the metro lines don't go straight from a to b, and because there are various offshoots of tunnels that aren't used by the passenger trains, when I'm in the city centre I'm never sure whether or not trains are rumbling past beneath my feet.

and when you look closely in the dark at the walls of the tunnels, you can sometimes see these dark offshoots. i'd love to be able to explore. with big lights and protective clothing, and weapons. just in case creatures or madmen haunt the darkness.

i love that the huge slope from the top of town (the haymarket end) to the bottom (central station and the quayside) means that the stretch of metro line running between south gosforth and central, the train station, starts outside and - even though it seems mostly flat - goes underground at jesmond. by haymarket (the next stop) the station has one of the longest escalators on the metro system. there's another long one at monument, but then - because the ground slopes away - one of the shortest at central. even though the ground drops away so steeply from central that the metro comes out and crosses the tyne very high over the river.

the fact that at haymarket, you turn left to go north and right to go south. at monument, you turn left to go south and right to go north, causing potential confusion for anyone who isn't concentrating (me, on more than one occasion).

i don't love everything. i hate the fact that they got rid of the cheery 'stand clear of the doors please!' and replaced it with a strangely-accented 'doors closing'. this was supposedly to make it clearer for non-english speakers, but i don't see how.

i don't love that i don't live near enough to use it to get into town. the bus system is pretty good, but it still gets stuck in traffic. the metro doesn't have that problem.

all in all, it's a pretty great system.

some photos are going onto flickr, if you're interested.


Debs said...

We don't have the metro/tube or any trains where I live, so it's always thrilling to visit the UK and go on one.

B said...

if you're ever in newcastle, let me know and i'll give you a Grand Tour of the Metro System :)

Mike said...

Hi B, have you seen the tyne tunnel esculators?

Longest wooden esculators in the world.... and pretty steep to me.

I can't even see the top properly!

Right on our doorstep!

B said...

Hi Mike, no I've never been there but it's been on my list of things to do ever since I first heard of them. Remind me if I don't post something about going there soon!

My dad told me I was talking nonsense when I said there were wooden escalators under the Tyne. And D hadn't heard of them! Shocking!!

pierre l said...

Thank you for the interesting words and the great photos (including flickr), B.

B said...

you're welcome pierre! nice to see you around and about again more :)