Thursday, 24 July 2014

Free Travel

I used to pay my fare every day when I was training to be a Quantity Surveyor. I'd buy a 10 trip ticket for the week. I cant remember how much it cost, but it was a convenient way to pay for the weeks travel. 

I don't miss those days. My day started with getting up early. I was still living at home. Id have some porridge for breakfast. Then shower, and out the door. Id walk for about 30 minutes to get to Wallaceville Station. Then jump on the old, cold, smelly train for the 1 hour ride to Wellington. In those days you could still smoke on the train. Every second carriage was a smoker, and every second wasn't. So it was bit of a crap shoot, but Id always aim for the non smoking carriages. Get to Wellington, and rush to the Porirua line for the Train to Porirua. Get to Porurua, and then walk 20 minutes to Elsdon at Wormald Brothers. Jesus, I was committed. The whole travelling day was about 4 hours. Which was a lot in the late 1970s in New Zealand. 

Soon enough I had enough money to buy a car, and the whole journey take about 20 minutes from Upper Hutt. 4 hours versus 20 minutes. Crazy. 

I can recall the guard on the train wasn't very observant, and occasionally I'd give him my ticket for clipping, and he’d clip a day I'd already used. Bonus, a free days travel. I thought I'd push the limit on this a bit. I'd hold my old tickets, and then keep offering them to the guard over and over. And you know what, he’d keep clipping them and handing them back. No questions asked. I scored many days free travel that way. What fun. I guess that's the price for doing a boring job. 

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