The subway of Big Apple is a special world of tunnels and rumbling trains rushing under the concrete giants. And if there on the surface is still possible to identify the status down here everything is balanced and all are equal.
No matter who you are, what you do and how you live – having descended into the sweltering bowels of the dark tunnels spread over 1335 km you become nobody. As the stations — 469 identical copies of each other — serve only for the sake of functionality and maximum efficiency thus a person becomes just a faceless entity that it is necessary to transport from one point to another. An endless stream of silver bullets open their cool insides for harried with stuffiness people.
The air is motionless only a part of it is being moves by flat muzzles of huge iron worms. All the rest is unmovable and is slowly heated by the core of the earth itself. It reminds the very top level of the underworld where waiting for the train each time turns into a slow torture – lungs are filled the humid hot air; the body is covered with sticky sweat even if you stand still. And only the tingling cold of metal insides gives melting consciousness a short break till the next station.
Actually it's funny that nowhere either in the guidebooks or on the Internet I didn’t found a specific information about how to use the New York subway. Of course in fact it is not difficult but there are some peculiarities too. For example, it is mentioned a lot that there are local and express trains. But no one warned that at the first trip you probably won’t be able to reach the required station for even 2 times in a row.
So here are few tips:
— Usually local and express trains stop at the same platform just on different ways. There are signs when you go down to the station. And at the station there are signs hanging above the track as well.
— There are stations where only local trains stop (white spot on the map). Thus sometimes in order to get to the station you need to take express first and then transfer to the local station.
— Pointers of trains movement direction at the station usually indicate direction in general — such as Downtown, Uptown, the Bronx, Brooklyn. So it is necessary to know at least the area or borough you need to reach.
— It is important to decide immediately which way to go because many stations have different enters in different directions. That’s why if you came in and realized that this is the wrong way you have to go out, cross the street and pay again.
Have a good day, MarrySav!)
This post is also available in: Russian