Thursday, March 12, 2009

GO Strikes Again!

The following blog may contain scenes of violence and extreme language.
Reader discretion is advised.

In other words, go get a snack kiddies cuz Auntie Mo is very upset right now and needs to use some grown up words.

Go watch Dora.

Are they gone?
Let's get down to business ... Remember, you were warned ...

To use Frani's current favourite word, GO Transit was a complete ClusterFuck last night.

I was scheduled to work late last night. Normally I would work until 9, but times are tough and HR is trying to cut back on overtime, so I was told that there's nothing going on so I could leave at 7. But I'm looking at the piles of filing on my desk and I call The Husband to say that I'm going to catch the 8:13 cuz I want to get some work done.

So I'm puttering away. Making some progress on the piles. When I receive a notification email from GO Transit.

7:31 PM - GO Train Delay
Due to a bridge inspection East of Union Station, passengers travelling both West and East bound can expect delays and some modified service. Update to follow.

sigh. Alright. I'll deal. It may take a little longer to get home, but these things happen. Having worked at an engineering firm, I'm thinking that they're doing tests on the overpass and the train needs to pass more slowly or stop while equipment is moved into place. No biggie, I'm thinking.

Next message:

7:35 PM - GO Train Cancellation(s)
The Oshawa 18:41 - Union 19:38 train trip will terminate at Danforth due to a bridge inspection. The Union 19:13-Oshawa 20:08 train trip will originate at Danforth due to a bridge inspection.

Oh for pete's sake! I call GO Transit to find out WTF? Cuz the times are off on the email. If they really mean the 7:13 train, then sending out an email at 7:35 and expecting us to take the subway to Danforth to catch the train that leaves at :23 after the hour isn't going to fly! Morons!

Buddy at GO Transit tells me they're not sure how long it will take. It may take hours. Apparently pieces of the bridge are falling off onto the track and this is causing a hazard. No shit, Sherlock! He says they're recommending passengers take the TTC to Danforth and catch the train there. At this point, it's 7:45. The train will be leaving Danforth at 8:23. I may or may not have enough time to get there. I happened to have a TTC token in my desk. I grab it and my coat and run out the door.

I have to take two different lines to get to Danforth and, of course, the timing isn't right so I have to wait 5 minutes at Bloor. I'm anxiously looking at my watch. I'm not going to make it. I know it.

There's one stop on the Bloor-Danforth line that is outside. My Blackberry buzzes. I have an email. It's GO Transit.

8:00 - GO Train Service Resumes
The bridge inspection East of Union Station has been completed and service has resumed both East and West bound. Passengers can expected (sic) some minor delays while service returns to normal.

You gotta be kidding me. I don't believe this. I'm halfway there. Probably won't make it in time. Can't go back. My eye is starting to twitch.

I get to Danforth. Run like a maniac up two flights of stairs, out the doors, towards the GO Train and I can hear the train bells. Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding.


I missed the gawdam train. I'm SO pissed off at this point. I call The Husband. Swear like a sailor, hang up on him (sorry about that Hon!) and stomp back to the TTC. I'm thinking about what to do.

My only experience with the Danforth station was last year. The train engine died so they dumped everyone out at Danforth. We were asked to stand on the platform. It was January with a windchill of -20C. The train sat on the tracks with the doors closed. The station was closed because these smaller stations are not open off rush-hour times. My assumption last night, therefore, was that the station wouldn't be open, and I didn't want to sit in the cold and wait for the train. There was no way I could make it back to Union in time to catch the 9:13. Which would mean waiting until 10:13 for the next train. So I took the TTC up to York Mills. Waited for the bus to take me all the way out to Ajax. I got home after 10.

Once I was home, I did nothing but cuss and scream and whine. The Husband is a saint for taking all that.

When I woke up this morning, I was feeling calmer. I went to customer service and very calmly and politely asked them what the cut-off time was for a refund on delays. She said 45 minutes. I asked what was going to happen with the Danforth issue last night. She said if I went to Danforth, then they would refund the cost of the trip to Danforth, which is more than the cost of a TTC token. "I used two tokens," I pointed out. "I missed the train and decided to go up to York Mills to take the bus home." "Why didn't you just stay at Danforth?" she asked. And I explained that I didn't actually get to the station when I saw the train leave. And I explained my previous freezing Danforth experience. She looked stunned. "They did that?!" Yeah, they did that. "OK. We'll give you two refunds. Just apply them to the purchase of your monthly pass next month."

She was really nice and we had a laugh when I pointed out that yesterday GO Transit announced a price hike. Good timing, morons! I knew I was really pissed off yesterday and I didn't want to yell at the customer service rep. It's not her fault. So I apologized to her. "I didn't yell at you, did I?" She laughed. "No, actually, you seemed a little scared when you first came in." That's cuz I was afraid I was going to lose my cool and scream at you.

All in all, I feel better. Although I'm sure the girls in the coffee room this morning thought otherwise. It's a little difficult to stay calm when GO is constantly messing up.

From now on, I'm getting a refund every time GO Transit screws up.
Screw you guys and the horse you came in on!


lady fairchilde said...


I knew you were about to blow a gasket when I read, "My eye is starting to twitch."!!

What a horrific journey - CLUSTERFUCK indeed!

Do you need a cookie? I brought you a cookie! Come get the cookie, come on girl, come on!

Busy Bee Suz said...

Oh my...public transportation NIGHTMARE!!!
I suppose you did not think to check your blood pressure when you got home???? I bet it was through the roof.
Hope today is MUCH better for you.

Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

Does it make you feel any better that reading about someone on the train is uber cool in my book? Its so major city/professional career-ish. I would be like "So, I drove my crap minivan and it broke down." A train delay is so much more chic!

Alex said...

Holy Crap sis, and you didn't even send me a text message!

Services like these (train, ttc, postal, etc.) wonder why people go on shooting rampages or give bomb threats!!!...

Please, do the math!

Evil Twin's Wife said...

That was too much! It was almost like a foreign language to me as I have no clue what a GO train is or any of those stops mean. I'm like DG(IT): "I was cruising along in my mini-van and sudddenly, the traffic was like a parking lot." LOL. Sorry to hear about your transportation frustration!

Lyndsay said...

Is it wrong to laugh? Because I certainly thought things like that ONLY happened to me ...