Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Usual Way

Tomorrow, the commuter train system in Madrid will experience a Big Bang. The second North-South tunnel will be opened and the line numbers and directions will change. I won't be able to catch a direct train to Cantoblanco anymore. It sucks big time. But what is the worst and the most shocking is that there was no information about it on the RENFE website until today. There was also no announcement in my station of Recoletos, which will be affected the most. Spain is truly different.
UPDATE after the first trip: The Recoletos station became a ghost town. Low frequency of trains, few confused people waiting for their usual trains. One woman was desperately calling her office to ask what was going on. On the other hand, Nuevos Ministerios is una locura de puta madre, filled with dust from the construction and thousands of disoriented people. While Qué! newspaper reports that 250,000 madrileños can sleep 10 minutes more, the reality was far from that. After the Nuevos Ministerios experience, I believe that number of people who transfer between trains must have increased. Advantages? The line to Cantoblanco is now serviced by the hypermodern Civia trains.
UPDATE 2 after the trip back: The Civia trains are the worst. They are much smaller than the "old" ones so they can't fit the thousands of people travelling from Alcobendas or Colmenar and I had to stand the whole ride.
Bad, bad RENFE.

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