Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Bayonne Flyer

In the Fogelman Library on Fifth Avenue, where I go to write on my lunch hour, I hear what I think is the sound of thunder everyday around the same time. Today I realized it was a subway train running beneath me. I forget that there is a whole world coursing through tunnels underground. Tonight I will check my subway map to find a line running right below Fifth Avenue, which makes sense. I could easily make this a blog about trains with some Seamus asides thrown in every now and then. I am fascinated. This morning on the Light Rail I decided to stare out the window and listen to music instead of reading. Once we reached what I call the Light Rail Depot (the covered building where the Light Rail trains rest and are cared for), I saw eight train cars wrapped in opaque white plastic. I could see their wheels and make out the shape of their windows. I wondered if these were fresh out-of-the-box cars or if there were repairs taking place, or was this just some sort of protection from the elements for cars that wouldn’t fit in the aluminum enclosure with the other cars? The Light Rail website doesn’t have much information about these things.

I haven’t told you about the Bayonne Flyer yet. This is my favorite train. Everyday at five o’clock it’s waiting at Hoboken Terminal, and everyday the same engineer drives it. Most days I have the flyer and the engineer in the mornings too. The Bayonne Flyer is a fine little train that by-passes most of Jersey City, but makes all the stops in Bayonne. The engineer doesn’t flip the switch for the automated computer voice like every other engineer does, instead he announces all the stops himself and often makes funny little asides. When he dings the doors-are-closing button, he usually does so to the tune of Shave and a Haircut, Two Bits. He’ll always hold the doors for late passengers and honks at the other Light Rail trains when we pass them. He’s the only engineer I noticed blowing the train whistle from time to time. Often times when I’m on his train, I don’t listen to my iPod. I just enjoy the ride. This morning I missed the Flyer and had a normal Hoboken bound train, which by the time we got to Danforth Avenue was standing room only.

Seamus's school is having a Halloween bash tomorrow. All the kids get to wear their costumes. Seamus is all set to be a vicious, fluffy green dinosaur, which he calls a dima. He's been roaring around the house in prepation. His school is having a pizza party too. This means I don't have to pack his lunch before I go to bed tonight. I also hear there will be a goodie bags and a Halloween pinata. Wish I could be there too.

Randomized iPod songs of this morning’s commute: Iron Maiden--Hallowed Be Thy Name; Dolly Parton--9 to 5; Judas Priest--Breaking the Law; Nancy Sinatra--Sugar Town; The Stranglers--Golden Brown.


Rickety Rosie said...

"Hallowed Be Thy Name," is one of my absolute favorites. Dunstan used to get a big kick out of watching me dance to it.
I envy you your train rides.
Happy Spookoween!

Rebecca said...

ian says those cars are likely new, that there's a large rr car manufacturer in NJ. i SO envy your passenger rail experiences. i LOVE each opportunity i have to use public transportation in large cities.

and that's cool about your Bayonne Flyer. when we were in atlanta on their metro/marta our engineer clicked on to announce the next station and we heard his Jamaican accent and i swear he ended the station call with mon!

Lydia Gwyn said...

I'm picturing Rickety Rosie dancing around to Iron Maiden!

Rebecca--I knew Ian would know the answer to that question. Engineers are so cool!

Lydia Gwyn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
drc said...

I believe those cars wrapped in plastic are old Newark subway cars they intend to use on the Bayonne Peninsula. Not sure if it'll ever happen though.

Lydia Gwyn said...

Thanks drc, for the info!

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