We’re all experiencing it: high gas prices. For the first time, I understand what people in Europe live with ever day. It’s new for a Californian, though!
So what am I doing to battle the budget buster called “gasoline”? I’ve started taking the train to work. OK, I’m super fortunate that my company provides a yearly train pass to all employees. I might not be as interested in riding the train if I had to shell out for a monthly pass every 4 weeks. As it is, I do get a pass so what I pay for is a monthly parking pass for $20. I park at my home station (San Carlos) and take a limited train to downtown San Jose. I used to walk to the San Carlos station, but it’s just a smidge stressful to make sure you make it on time and it’s quite unpleasant to show up at work sweaty from the walk. And trust me, when you get home in the afternoon, the last thing you want is to walk over a mile to get into your jammies!
I’ve got my routine down. I bring a travel mug with my morning coffee for a nice drink during my ride. Since I bring my lunch, I have a place to put my mug after I finish. Trust me, when you commute by train, you think about all the stuff you have to carry! I grab a copy of the Daily News (free San Mateo County paper), hop on the train and settle in for my 35 minute ride. It’s very relaxing, actually.
As a native Californian, though, there are things I have to get used to. When you take the train, your time doesn’t feel like your own until you’re back in your car. I know, it’s a mental thing but that feeing is there. As long as I know this and plan for train time, I’m fine with it. I also have to get used to carrying a bunch of stuff. I’m really starting to downsize the contents of my purse, etc. so that I don’t have to schlep so much around.
Thus my new commute begins.