Monday, October 10, 2011

Ten Facts about Minneapolis Metro Transit

Being without a drivers license in a foreign country , I am forced to use the public transport system to commute to work. After reading this blog about the public transport in India , felt like writing one about my experiences with the metro transit.

Metro Transit Facts :

#1 You will never be without a seat on a bus.
Till this date , I have never ever been without a seat in any of the metro transit buses. The trains may be ,  but the buses always have plenty of seats. In fact I have even had the whole bus to myself once or twice.

#2 Always have exact money to pay.You cannot buy a ticket unless you have exact change, but most drivers will let you have the benefit of the doubt and give you the ticket , once or twice  even if you don't have it. But it does get you a lot of stares from around the bus  (This applies only if there are people in the bus).

#3 If some one asks about your job , avoid the usual techno jargon like programmer , software  etc , Better still avoid the word software altogether and say that you work for
 so and so employer. With huge recession fears looming, you don't want people staring at you like you stole their job from them.

#4 There are weirdo vaynokkis in every land. I even had to endure a guy try to talk to me about cricket (duh!)  and he was not an Indian or Pakistani.

#5 The other women you see on the bus are either dressed like sluts or women in their fifties talking about their grand children.Exceptions are few and far between mostly being Asian women with multiple children or Indian software engineers who sleep till their destination is reached. Men who are not in their fifties or sixties are usually dressed in jeans that look like they are held up only by virtue of static electricity and over sized t shirts.

#6 If you want to make polite conversation with fellow passengers , stick to safe topics like weather (What crappy weather today) or angst at approaching winter . Family questions are a strict no.

#7. Sometimes , your bus might stop for a disabled person and if it does , be assured that your connection bus will be gone , for in this country disabled people on wheel chair get royal treatment. (Made me feel sorry for the same category in India where they are just bound to be pushed off by the huge rush of people in the bus stop.

#8 If  you see some one who is carrying many leaflets , act fast asleep , for the person is most probably  a zealous follower of some church who will talk to you for hours about joining them which will make you fall asleep anyway.

#9 Expect public displays of affection. If you are embarrassed by it , feigning sleep is the best option , but believe it or not , I have seen worse in Indian trains.

#10 Know exactly where to get down. Do not expect the driver or the fellow passengers to be able to help you because , 9 out of 10 times they won't know and even in the odd chance that they do know, they might misunderstand your accent and misdirect you.


  1. Worse in Indian trains??? Really??

  2. Inidan trains?? I guess I missed that train :)

  3. Sunitha,
    Good observations.Simple facts.
    Then about #5, I used to see a variety of folks in bus as u mentioned ,but also see business executives dressed professionally, young ladies with good fashion sense .That may be because I'm travelling to downtown.

    -It was fun to read.

  4. @nishanth and @Komban , of all the things I said in the post, this interested you the most?

    @Radhika , thanks, I guess the type of people you mentioned only travel to downtown. Haven't seen any in Eagan Pattikkadu..

  5. Nice one..but I have different experiences to say...I travel to St Paul and downtown and many other places...

    Just another experience to share(the one that shook me!!)... A girl who was 16 was waiting for the bus along with me in the bus stop. By the way, she is 34 weeks pregnant!! She was wearing a ring on her ring finger which gave me a wrong impression that she was married - which she corrected later saying she loved wearing artificial rings.. She dosnt even know where the father of her daughter works...Also, the father dosnt care for the baby as it is a girl and he wanted a boy..(In this country, in this generation!!!). She lives with her mother who had already warned her couple of years back that if she got pregnant before she was 18, she has to leave the house wen the baby was born. The girl was waiting for the bus to go to that she could complete her school and get a job as soon as her daughter is here... !!! I was shook..!! terribly....

  6. @Veena, OMG, That is scary even to think of..

  7. Soooo true! I have experienced all these points...especially the many leaflets points. Why do they always get me! Also the exact change one. They do hv change but they need to shout at u before taking it out!

  8. LOL. It's all the same everywhere isn't it. Best option out? Get a car:P

    And PDA's worse in trains? :P WOW.

  9. @Red Handed. Same Pinch.(No back Pinch) LOL.

    @PeeVee , Yes, Should get a car as oon as I learn to drive.. :) Well, the PDA part seems to have been a controversial statement in retrospect, May be I was just unlucky enough to be on one such train..may be..