5 Thoughts You Have While Commuting in Chicago
Start writing a post

5 Thoughts You Have While Commuting in Chicago

The good, the bad and the "eh"s of riding the train

5 Thoughts You Have While Commuting in Chicago
Tracy Webb

As a college student in Chicago, I ride the CTA fairly often. Between tracking how close the next train is to the "L" platform or searching for traffic updates on Lake Shore Drive, Chicago's public transit has become a prominent part of my life. And with any impactful person, place or thing that you see on more than just one occasion, it's only natural that you start to develop feelings towards it, right?

1. Will I make it in time?

You're on the other side of the CTA gate and the train is rapidly approaching. You hear its thunderous presence coming to a stop on the tracks, and it is in this moment that you know you must make a decision. Do you sprint to make it through those quickly closing doors, or do you just wait ten minutes for the next one? And honestly, I'd be lying if I didn't say that I've almost been crushed a few times.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F09%2F10%2F636091441164767314436478940_michelle.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=365&h=6b0f7a375a735205b95d226fe3bfe75cfda181a746d475ac2f52704b7c58ba39&size=980x&c=3874756972 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F09%252F10%252F636091441164767314436478940_michelle.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D365%26h%3D6b0f7a375a735205b95d226fe3bfe75cfda181a746d475ac2f52704b7c58ba39%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3874756972%22%7D" expand=1]

2. Is that my train, way off in the distance?

We've all experienced that brutal disappointment of waiting for the train in the midst of "Chibera", while all of the heaters are being used, and you think you see the red line approaching. But then it turns out, it's a purple line train, your eyes deceived you and ironically enough, your hands are starting to resemble the same purple hue that just zoomed past you and left you in the freezing cold.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F09%2F11%2F636091515797104806-1561226877_snow.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=735&h=3a0b0b3d690b636f70b6541f1e2b85b9c56d2f0afa72b08f9fe13c405b2bf010&size=980x&c=4195015920 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F09%252F11%252F636091515797104806-1561226877_snow.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D735%26h%3D3a0b0b3d690b636f70b6541f1e2b85b9c56d2f0afa72b08f9fe13c405b2bf010%26size%3D980x%26c%3D4195015920%22%7D" expand=1]

3. Yes, an open seat. Praise the CTA gods.

Nothing can beat the feeling of relief when you grab a seat that's empty on either side, but especially when you aren't expecting it. Sometimes it's nice to have your own space, and let's face it, those seats can get pretty squished.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F09%2F11%2F63609151423570492157993990_ha.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=53&h=0ee02615cd21acc3f217428b6b33c9ecf7fae79f679bd2087a3645839bb32fdd&size=980x&c=2325437697 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F09%252F11%252F63609151423570492157993990_ha.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D53%26h%3D0ee02615cd21acc3f217428b6b33c9ecf7fae79f679bd2087a3645839bb32fdd%26size%3D980x%26c%3D2325437697%22%7D" expand=1]

4. Really, why is the train packed right now?

Similar to the excitement you feel when you're unexpectedly blessed with an open seat, you can also get really disappointed when the train is unusually packed. Make sure to always check traffic updates for bus routes and train lines, because you never know when construction or popular festivals will strike.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F09%2F10%2F636091466670755841-930787015_todd%2520.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=439&h=826a6459b93d5686ff70f8f02d2360b415561752aa12cfd98aba70cf5043dc01&size=980x&c=3659535322 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F09%252F10%252F636091466670755841-930787015_todd%252520.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D439%26h%3D826a6459b93d5686ff70f8f02d2360b415561752aa12cfd98aba70cf5043dc01%26size%3D980x%26c%3D3659535322%22%7D" expand=1]

5. Commuting is what you make of it

Despite the little annoyances public transit can present, it's the small victories that make the experience all the better. Scoring that open seat or making it into the train car in the nick of time brings some joy to the commuting process, and even if you do have to sit in a seat that's squished between two other riders, at least you're still getting around the city.

[rebelmouse-proxy-image https://media.rbl.ms/image?u=%2Ffiles%2F2016%2F09%2F11%2F636091504590557207-506006797_last%2520one.gif&ho=https%3A%2F%2Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net&s=518&h=3fd32f8b306db3085f8d2f61ade2cf1973a2916bddca6574c8ad724cdb730e19&size=980x&c=1530390320 crop_info="%7B%22image%22%3A%20%22https%3A//media.rbl.ms/image%3Fu%3D%252Ffiles%252F2016%252F09%252F11%252F636091504590557207-506006797_last%252520one.gif%26ho%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Faz616578.vo.msecnd.net%26s%3D518%26h%3D3fd32f8b306db3085f8d2f61ade2cf1973a2916bddca6574c8ad724cdb730e19%26size%3D980x%26c%3D1530390320%22%7D" expand=1]

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Falling For Fall

Super Cute Home Decor and Food Ideas for the Autumn Season.

Jamie Cahoon

I don't know about you but Autumn is my favorite season of the year. The leaves are falling, the air is crisp and tops of the mountains begin to be sprinkled with snow. Being as I'm not Haloween's biggest fan, I love to decorate my home with super cute fall decorations. I have found 11 of the cutest DIY decor items that are both inexpensive and adorable. Ballin' on a college kids budget makes for fun craft nights instead of buying the items at a ridiculous mass produced price.

Keep Reading... Show less

Slavery Was NOT Abolished

Jeevti from Pakistan would like to tell you so herself.


Unfortunately, at this time of year, we tend to overlook how incredibly blessed we are. We live in a free world, where we should not have to fear being penalized for our gender, sexual orientation, beliefs, or values. This is a fact we take for granted; in many other countries, simply being born female makes you an immediate target.

Keep Reading... Show less
Melisa Im

My Ethnicity

Hispanic is not a race... it’s an ethnicity. The term Hispanic describes a group of people whose common thread is language and/or culture. I’m a Hispanic woman born in Argentina to Korean parents. I self-identify as Hispanic/Latina and my personal experiences can’t be summarized by the color of my skin or the languages on my tongue. That is because every single person in the universe has a unique experience. Whether someone labels me as Korean or Argentine or American, that will never change my experiences as a Spanish speaker, immigrant, child of divorced parents, Californian, college graduate (Go Bears!), omnivore, writer, or any other label I choose for myself.

Keep Reading... Show less

When In Nashville

Here's some things you could do.

Kaitlyn Wells

I have had the opportunity to visit so many places in my lifetime, and recently one of those places was Nashville, Tennessee. There is so much to do and see in Nashville but here are some of my favorites that I would highly recommend.

Keep Reading... Show less
Your Work Week As Told By Michael Scott And Stanley Hudson

"The Office" is basically the best American TV show created in the past 15 years (you can fight me on this). And through all its hilarity and cringe-worthy "that would never happen in real life" moments, the show really does have a lot of relatable themes, as can be seen by the little compilation I put together of Michael Scott and Stanley Hudson.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments