Just say no to 608X

I’ve done my research, pondered my options and my conclusion is: just say to no to 608X.

Now you’re probably thinking: What’s this? What the hell have I missed? Is this some new standard that should’ve known about? Haven’t I done my job properly? Is there an upcoming vote?

Calm down, you’re doing just fine. 608X is a new “direct” bus from the suburb I live in north of Stockholm, Vallentuna, in to the Stockholm city center. There’s at least 14 stops on this “direct” route and under the best circumstances it takes 52 minutes (given no traffic problems whatsoever). Now you’re probably thinking:

Whoa, Robert, you live far away from the city.

Thing is, I don’t. It’s only about 30 kilometers and we’ve already got a train that only takes 25 minutes to the city, and to get the to the place where the bus stops, it’s about 10-15 minutes walking or by subway. So, before this fall when they introduced the bus route, it took about 35-40 minutes to get where I wanted. But now they’re telling me that they’ve found the perfect way, now they will breathtakingly improve my commuting.

Sounds like the release of a software company, or the Emperor’s new clothes…

But fear not, my fellow Vallentuna citizens! The train’s still there and it still goes (a lot) faster and is more comfortable. So say no to 608X. 608X sucks (or “608X suger”, as we would say here in Sweden).

21 Comments

  • Tommy Olsson says:

    At least you have the option to use a bus or a train. I have 40 km of alleged 'road' to town, and there is no public transportation available at all. That's really fun when the petrol price keeps reaching a new all-time high every day. πŸ™

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Tommy,

    Pricewise, I feel your pain.

    But there aren't any traffic queues up north, right? And maybe free parking? πŸ™‚

  • inoodle says:

    I almost feel sorry for you πŸ™‚

    I live about 8km from London, and it takes me about 40 mins on the tube to get in – dodging bombs, thieves and mad people on route.

    I bet you have some nice countryside around you too!

    Mind you, I'm not really complaining, I know some people who commute for 2hrs each way every day!

  • Robert Nyman says:

    inoodle,

    40 minutes sounds like a long time for that distance. In that case, I'd ride a bike instead.

    But yes, I do have some countryside around me, and I don't want my daughter to grow up in the city. πŸ™‚

    Commuting two hours one-way would suck the life out of me.

  • I spent 20 years commuting into Sydney from the Suburbs, over an hour each way.

    Now I live on the South Coast and work at home. Work is harder to get but I only have to commute from one end of the house to my office at the other end.

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Richard,

    I envy you, although I would find it very hard to work at home.

    It's calmer in the office… πŸ˜‰

  • Box says:

    Sometimes when my bicile have a flat tire I have to take the bus to work. That takes about 25 minutes which is annoying, when I ride my bike it only takes 10 – 15 minutes. But I should not complain I guess…

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Box,

    No, you shouldn't. πŸ™‚

  • Mats says:

    It should take me 31 minutes to get to work acording to SL but it always takes me about 45 odly enough. The extra 13 minutes is actually walking to and from the tube but still, such a small city and it still takes forever to and from work. I need to get a job in the city. πŸ˜‰

  • Mats says:

    I can't count, it was supposed to be 14 minutes … πŸ˜›

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Mats,

    Well, commuting isn't that much fun, is it? πŸ™‚

  • Mats says:

    No, but it should give me the time to calculate 45-13 … πŸ˜‰

  • Mats says:

    I did it again … 45-31 is what I meant … I'm gonna blame the keyboard … πŸ˜›

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Mats,

    Some freaky keyboard you seem to have there! πŸ™‚

  • Tommy Olsson says:

    Well, I've got two choices of roads; one where there are no queues, but the road quality is really poor, one (E4) where the road is a bit better, but there are some queues, traffic lights and speed cameras. Of course there aren't queues like in Stockholm, though.

    Parking is not free, although it can be quite inexpensive in some places. I rent a spot in a parking garage which is fairly secure. That's costing me quite a bit, but I feel it's worth it since I'm so dependent on my Jeep.

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Tommy,

    So then, except for the ridicoulusly steep gas prices, you're commuting situation sounds at least bearable otherwise. πŸ™‚

  • Tommy Olsson says:

    I don't know if driving on those 'roads' can be called 'bearable,' but apart from that, yes. πŸ™‚

    You need a 4WD with good clearance and suspension. I had a not-so-old Saab when I moved out here, and those roads killed it in less than a year.

  • nortypig says:

    That isn't so bad as even here in quiet Hobart Tasmania it takes me over half an hour for the busses to reach the city centre 3 suburbs away. If you look at a Hobart picture we live at the foot of the mountain!

    When I was young and in the Navy I was posted at HMAS Leeuwin at Fremantle, Western Australia. I jumped on a Number 001 bus to Fremantle from the city and it took about an hour and a half or more. The bus went out into the bush entirely and everyone got off even the bus driver for 20 minutes! And it was after dark. If that route still runs avoid it like the plague lol.

    I sympathise entirely. Petrol and parking are too expensive though so I catch busses.

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Tommy,

    Yeah, I know about your Jeep love. πŸ™‚

    nortypig,

    I've been to Australia a copple of times, but I still haven't had the chance to visit Tasmania nor Western Australia.

    But if I ever go to Fremantle, I know what bus not to take then! πŸ™‚

    For me, the train option here is really good and I'll avoid buses as long as I can.

    Also, thanks everyone for sharing! Really good to talk about something beside web developing for a change. As of Sunday September 4th I was ranked #1 at both Google and MSN Search for "608x sucks" and "608x suger". πŸ˜€

    If you have liked it also, then I hope you'll like what I'll post about in the middle of the upcoming week. I'm thinking of having another topic here as well as still writing about web developing. Stay tuned!

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Gary,

    I am of the opinion, after many years of commuting by rail and bus, and to and from various locations, that incompetance is the primary requirement for an executive/managerial position in mass transit.

    Gary, that’s hilarious! πŸ˜€
    And probably true…

  • Gary Turner says:

    I am of the opinion, after many years of commuting by rail and bus, and to and from various locations, that incompetance is the primary requirement for an executive/managerial position in mass transit.

    In Dallas, we have in-town commutes taking an hour or more by bus and train that take 17 minutes by car. Busses get to the station after the inbound train has left and they leave before the outbound train arrives; all on schedule.

    Maybe I should apply for the general manager's spot at <acronym title="Dallas Area Rapid Transit">DART</acronym>. I'm sure if I worked hard, I could be as incompetant as anyone there.

    cheers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *