I’m still wondering about the timing of this week’s Metro shutdown. For one thing, they knew about the system’s ability to catch fire for months. And even if this was provoked by its doing so Monday, what on Earth took them so long to announce it? Even if they felt they couldn’t shut it down immediately Tuesday night and leave everyone stranded, they should have announced much earlier. Instead I only found out minutes before I left work, and even then it wasn’t official yet, which meant no transportation advisories like there might have otherwise been. Although it was by the time I got out at King Street, where they were hastily trying to get the word out:
I seriously considered staying home Wednesday, especially once I learned there was no bus that went directly to the Pentagon from King Street; I was particularly worried about trying to change buses when the traffic would probably make it difficult for them to keep on schedule. But ultimately mom and I went out to try to drive me to Braddock Road, with the hope that if we ran into impossible traffic, we’d be able to turn around. But we ran into surprisingly little traffic, and there weren’t very many people on the bus I boarded either. It took us through a scenic neighborhood on the way to the highway, where there were multiple tulip trees in bloom:
I was impressed by this tree on the way there; I took a photo of it on the way home
When in turned onto 395, the bus took the middle lane, which wasn’t too crowded. There were more cars on the right, headed into the District, though they were moving steadily:
I was a little more worried about what the traffic might be like at five. But ultimately, the boss was nice enough to let us go 59 minutes early. Boarding my first bus home on a day that was hard enough for everyone as it was, I endured a very rude driver, but 395 was much as it had been in the morning:
Although now I was on the wrong side of the bus to photograph it properly.
I even managed to get back to Braddock Road in time to board the bus I regularly take at its starting point, albeit with much less time to spare than I should have had, after going back through that scenic neighborhood:
Another photo of tulip trees, taken while the bus was in motion.
From what accounts I heard, the day varied wildly for people. Some, like me, were lucky and had easy times of it; others went through hours of hell. Now we are left to wonder how much safer our trains really are, but most of us will keep taking them. It did take me a long time to get home.