Chicago Sun-Times

Your longest commute

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What's the longest amount of time it has taken you to get to work on the CTA, Metra or Pace? I bet you CTA riders can pull from your experiences this week, now that one of the tracks at Belmont and Fullerton is shut down.

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I catch the blue line at Clark & Lake at 4:55 p.m. There have been several occasions where it took me around one hour and 15 minutes to go five stops. The biggest problem is that you cannot catch a blue line train until maybe, if you are lucky, three or four trains have stopped with full capacity leaving you to wait for another train, another train and another train. They are so full because they are not running on their scheduled time. They are constantly late. Now, it seems that we are having that problem going to work and going home from work. I don't mind the six mile power down because of the condition of the tracks. People don't realize that is preventing a derailment. Many people complain about that. Don't complain about that. Think about it, have you ever been in a derailment. If not, believe me go with flow because you want to get to work in one piece. I don't like a lot of things about the blue line. I have been taking this line 38 years and it was never like this years ago. CTA is going down hill and they are not thinking of their passengers. Homeless people smelling up the cars, urine smell in the underground stations, etc. I could keep going on. CTA has us over a barrell. Most of us don't have another way of getting to work. I look forward to Metra this Spring and Summer. What a relief this will be.

Not to work, but home from work: 3 hours trying to get Loop to Elmhurst. Some poor unfortunate soul met their demise near the Melrose Park station, and all the traffic each way stopped while they investigated the scene. They announced the delay just before we were to pull out of the station.

It would have been longer than three hours, but I walked over to Union Station (where I had just missed the 7:30pm train), caught the 8:30pm local-local-local to Downers Grove Fairview, and had my father pick me up and drive me over to Elmhurst.

I used to ride from 79th and Cottage Grove to the Jefferson Park Stop on the Blue line. That trek was so long, I would have to shave at the beginning and end of it. And there were a few times I temped out in the O'hare corridor. My wife had to email me pictures of the kids, so I would know them when I got back home.

But I know of farther distances travelled.

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