Let’s face it. You won’t be going to the gym every day in 2013. But you will be going somewhere. And maybe you can improve how you do it. That’s why I asked readers to send me their New Year’s transportation resolutions.
My favorite came from Colleen Kelly, who’s fallen into the habit of cutting through a courtyard to shorten the stroll to her office from Gallery Place. “This year I am going to walk the extra half block to Pennsylvania Avenue — to enjoy the view of the Capitol, the Archives and the National Gallery. [It’s] a view I take for granted,” she wrote.
Small steps are the easiest to stick with over time, so I predict that Kelly will be seeing a lot of that postcard panorama.
Being able to take in the scenery instead of the traffic may also help the folks who pledged to go for the bus rather than drive this year. To the recent transplant from Dallas who calls taking the plunge a “scary thought,” you’re gonna be fine.
I’d just suggest heeding the advice of another reader, who shared her standing resolution of never taking the last Metro train of the night. It helps her avoid being hit on by drunk guys and reduces her odds of getting stranded. (After lapsing in previous years, she managed to keep this resolution in 2012.)
As for me, I have a twist planned on the classic New Year’s resolution: I’m going to lose the wait. I figure the most irritating thing about riding public transportation in D.C. is excessive downtime, which I spend pacing on platforms and shivering at bus stops, constantly craning my neck to see if the right route number is coming around the corner.
I find ways to fill the minutes — counting how long I can stand on one foot, trying to remember all the songs in a given musical, eavesdropping on anyone nearby — but a better option would be to skip the holdup by remembering to check my phone for train and bus times before heading out.
The NextBus DC app, which allowed users to see arrival info with a tap or two, apparently stopped working a couple of weeks ago when the tech companies behind it couldn’t settle a dispute. It may come back to life soon, but until then, NextBus’ website and phone system are working perfectly fine.
Metro’s resolution to fire up those info screens at station kiosks should also help me decide whether to go through the faregates or come up with an alternative plan that won’t involve quizzing myself on show tunes.
With all of my new extra time, I know exactly what to do. Just like Kelly, I’ll opt for the scenic route.