Saturday, August 17, 2013

Happy Valley to Quarry Bay transportation

My new job is in Quarry Bay, which is a perfectly agreeable neighborhood once I get there.  There are plenty of dining options and while my friends who work in the area complain about the queues for the popular joints, in reality they aren't as horrific as what I experienced in Wanchai. The network of connections between buildings are preferable to struggling down a narrow sidewalk among cars and vans.  Anyway, my biggest gripe was the transportation to Quarry Bay from Happy Valley.  I was spoiled by the ease of travelling on the 5S morning express bus, which picked up almost to the minute every fifteen minutes from the hour and got me to the front door of my old office in Wanchai within ten minutes, and to the client's office in Sheung Wan within forty minutes.

SB used to work in Taikoo and his method of transportation was to take the 30 minibus to the Causeway Bay MTR and then ride it to Taikoo.  It was a thirty minute trip from when he got on a minibus, but sometimes finding a minibus was an ordeal.  He would have to walk upstream to catch a seat.  I'm a rather lazy commuter and want to move as little as possible.  Each step equates to a drop of sweat trickling down my body.  This is why I am thrilled to have discovered a commute that requires the least amount of movement.

I can catch the 8x/19 morning express at around 8:15am and then transfer at Island Place to one of seven buses so that my wait is usually less than a minute.  If I transfer on the 2A or 2, the transfer is free.  The 85 costs an additional $3.70, the 77 and 99 cost $4, and the 81 and 82 cost $4.10.  I take whatever appears first so that I walk into the office between 8:55 and 9am.  Brilliant.  It's not a ten minute ride, but it beats the MTR rabbit hole, in my opinion. However, if I were to be running late, I could do the MTR route and save 15 minutes.  Or I could wrestle someone in the taxi queue but I shouldn't underestimate the aggression of someone who's been waiting in the taxi queue for twenty minutes.  I once saw a smartly dressed woman in four inch heels chase down and drag a queue jumper out of a taxi.  If she hadn't, there were plenty of others who looked like they would have done so.  Personally, I hate to start the day off pummeling someone.

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