Long way to the metro
Long long time ago, when I was a high school student, I heard the story
about the longest escalator in Japan. According to that, it's in the metro
station called Shin-Ochanomizu, Tokyo. So one day in after school, I went
to the station to make it sure by myself. To be honest, I had estimated
it too small. But I was surprised because it's actually long enough. Is
the escalator of Shin-Ochanomizu Station still the longest one even now?
I remember the story about Shin-Ochanomizu Station as taking escalator
of the metro station in Kyiv. A token coin I bought at ticket booth is
made of plastic. It looks like a betting tip for a toy roulette. And it's
surprisingly very cheap, about 0.2USD. Generally, a public transportation
fare is cheap here in Ukraine.
A heavy turn still is easily turned putting the plastic token. And one
flight down with short escalator. "What a reasonable transportation
Kyiv metro is!" I walk through the floor thinking like that.
However at the next moment, the things waiting for me is long escalator
I have never seen. "Gush! I can't see the bottom end. I could be brought
to the earth core with it. This must be much longer than the escalator
of Tokyo metro station. Why it's so long? This structure comes from military
reason in Soviet period, or from the geographical?"
The metro station is always crowded. The people never haste on the long
escalator which seems take more than 3 minutes for full ride. They just
stand still on the step. So do I.
I put my hand on the side belt. Now let's go to the long journey to the
geocity. It's fun to me watching people on the escalator for upward direction.
Suddenly I notice my upper body is bent forward. My hand holding escalator
belt is stretched far away to the forward. "If my hand slipped on
the belt?" Then I back it to the first position next to my waist.
After a while, I notice again my hand goes forward. "???" Yes,
the belt is moving faster than steps. I look closely the people on the
opposite escalator. All people bend their upper body forward and adjust
their hand position from time to time.
I get to the bottom after long journey. At the bottom, a security woman sits on the chair and stares at the escalators and emergent stop button in very serious face. She is definitely needed person for this escalator. Without her, we could get a fatal accident in case of emergency.
I look it up again. Let's say, I broke my leg and hold crutches with both
hand. I come to the bottom of the escalator. Then I find it's out of order.
I could kill myself.
The metro system of Kyiv was not convenient to me. For instance, a station
in shallow depth has an extremely long path instead of a long escalator.
They never let me access to a train easily after all. Add to that, the
distance between stations were slightly longer for city commuter. (Or Kyiv
itself is not so big) So I often had an additional walk to the destination
after getting off the train. I switched from the metro to a bus or a tram
in the end.
However I thought the people standing on the long escalator well expressed
the nature of Ukrainian people. In the meaning, The metro of Kyiv was interesting
transportation to me.
" Passing days " Kyiv , Ukraine 2009