I have a pretty easy commute to work each day. Most people in Toronto have to drive, or take a GO Train, or at least a long subway ride. Me, I’m about 20 minutes door-to-door: short walk + 7 subway stops + even shorter walk. I don’t know how people do an hour (or more) each way every day. I’ve never been one for needing a giant house (not having kids helps, I guess) so I don’t get the trade-off of spending that much time in a car or on a train.
I was thinking about some people’s long commutes earlier this week, when I flew home from New York. I was in and out of NYC in about 12 hours, just long enough to check in to my room, get some sleep, take care of some work things, and fly home. I flew Porter, naturally.
I didn’t even get to have a meal in New York, which just seems criminal. Worse yet: on my way into Manhattan my taxi stopped at a light right in front of The Pony Bar (one of my all-time favourite beer joints) and I couldn’t even go in. I just stared longingly through the window like a thirsty Garfield.
The next day I wrapped up my work thing at the Marriott Marquis, took a picture of Times Square from the 9th floor lobby, and beat it out of there.
Here’s the mildly-amazing bit: I left the hotel at 10:45. By 11:15 I was at Newark airport. By 11:20 the Porter agent had switched me to the noon flight. By 11:45 I was boarding. By 12:05 we were airborne. By 1:20 we were on the ground back in Toronto. By 1:25 I was clearing customs (well, a Nexus machine). By 1:35 I was through the tunnel and in a cab. By 1:45 I was home.
So that’s three hours from the door of my hotel room in midtown Manhattan to the foyer of my condo in downtown Toronto. I know people in the GTA who commute for three hours by car every day. I’m not sure whether to be impressed by the efficiency of modern air travel (when you get pretty good at it, that is) or sad for the people I know who spend 20% of their waking day fighting Toronto traffic.
Cover photo by Maggie Mbroh, used under Creative Commons license