Friday, July 06, 2007

We're On The Road To Nowhere



Had the journey from Hell yesterday. I had an interview at a company way out of town on the North Shores of Sydney in a place called North Ryde.

The email from the recruitment consultant already acknowledged the inaccessibility. "Don't think there's a train station, so you might have to take a bus. Or something.", it said vaguely.

I had been given several pieces of contradictory advice, so when I got to the window at Kings Cross station, I asked the woman if I could buy a combined train and bus ticket to North Sydney and then on to North Ryde.

"Completely wrong way of doing it" she said "Go to West Ryde"
"Right" I said "Is there a bus from West Ryde to North Ryde ?"
"Don't know" she said "Ask the guy at the barriers"

Eh? How come she didn't know? Throughout all this there was a woman behind me who, because my conversation had lasted more than 1 minute, was now going :Ooooh. Ooooh. Oooh. Come onnnnnn. Come onnnn." Like she needed a wee.

So I moved over to the guy on the barriers. Here was my second problem. By complete coincidence he was already talking to somebody I wanted to avoid. About a month ago Matty met another Persian bloke in the hostel. Initially, they knocked about together, but Matty soon realised he was a weirdo and did everything to avoid him. He had also pissed off people in the hostel by being smelly, asking women strange questions and invading generally people's personal space. I felt sorry for Matty; he was so embarrassed that his fellow countryman was such a twat, he kept apologising on his behalf.

And now Weird Persian was talking to the bloke at the barriers. I kept my distance in case I was recognised. So much distance in fact that someone else jumped in front of me. When I finally got to the guy and asked him how to get to North Ryde he began banging his fist on the counter and making horse noises. It was at this point I realised he had Tourettes. Seriously.

After a 3 minutes of flicking through a book and yelping he, too, declared he didn't know how to get there. Brilliant. Wanted to go back to the window, but there was a massive queue. Went to the ticket machine. Wouldn't accept notes. Luckily had exact change. Machine wouldn't accept my $2 coin. Had to join queue again. By this point I had been in the station 20 minutes and hadn't gone anywhere yet.

When I finally got to North Sydney, the buses were so sparse I ended up getting a taxi. Couldn't take the risk seeing as it was for an interview.

The return journey wasn't much better. This time I ended up wandering around MacQuarrie shopping centre multi-storey car park looking for the bus stop, and when I did find the correct bus, it meandered and dawdled through cul-de-sacs and residential side streets bashing into mini-roundabouts and speed bumps for the best part of 90 minutes.

I felt sick. The kind of travel sickness only a rickety diesel bus can create. And when the bus stopped for 10 minutes to change the driver, and then when that driver later took the bus down a road which was closed and had to reverse a 30 ft vehicle in a gravel pit, I thought I would never get home.

If I get this job, I think I will sleep in the office.

1 comment:

Paul said...

You should have gone to http://www.131500.info/

...and I can't believe they STILL haven't finished that new railway line... what a bunch of barbie-munching slackers....