Thursday, January 13, 2011

How I Get to Work

One thing I love about living in Taipei is that it's so easy to get around everywhere, even without a car (or scooter). Taxis can be found almost everywhere and the bus system is cheap and extensive. But the MRT (the Taipei subway/sky train rail system) is my go-to form of transportation. It helps that I live really close to an MRT station (and a transfer one, at that), since that's how I commute to and from work every weekday. I get to miss the vehicular rush hour traffic, but that doesn't mean no waiting time:

MRT Station

This is a photo of people waiting to get onto the platform. The entrance is on the opposite platform, so people are coming down the stairs in order to be going the right direction. There are long lines stretching across the platform, which is so packed that the rest of the commuters are forced to wait on the stairs until a train comes to relieve the crush of people (the exit stairs are at the opposite end of the platform). I guess it's kind of hard to see from this photo how many people there are. Ah well, I'll try to see if I can get better ones.

Unfortunately for you (but fortunately for my sanity), I don't see this every day. I usually miss the worst of the traffic since I don't arrive at work until around 9:30am, so I only see this when there's a holdup due to some sort of issue, like a malfunction or accident. They tend to get resolved pretty quickly though, since a lot of people depend on the MRT as their work transportation.

When something happens to cause a delay, MRT employees will hand out tardy slips as you exit. Like, "Hey this person was late not because he or she didn't want to get out of bed on time because it was too cold; no, it was entirely the fault of the MRT system as there was an unforeseen delay of [however many] minutes, so please go easy on the bearer of this notice!" Or something like that.

Although there were two such delays this week (already!), I managed to make it to work around 9:30ish, so I didn't bother with the slips. But I still took one to photograph and show you:

MRT Tardy Slip

So yeah, the MRT is wonderful and convenient and all that, but I'm not a huge fan of taking it in the mornings because everyone is packed like sardines (well, just for a few stops, thankfully). Plus most of the commuters are middle-aged office workers. Not enough eye candy. :P


  1. I want to go back and visit Taiwan so bad. D: Especially Taipei. :P

  2. Yeah, being in Taipei is a lot of fun. When's the last time you were here? You should totally visit again!

  3. Yeah, being in Taipei is a lot of fun. When’s the last time you were here? You should totally visit again!