Monday, July 07, 2008

driving around the little red dot


It was but just yesterday where Singapore was just a fishing village. And now, Singapore is a hustling and bustling little red dot that is screaming attention in the world.

Guess the latest hot topic here on this little red dot would be the numerous ERP gantries that has different timings and charges. According the the authorities, they hope that with this system in place, drivers will avoid passing through town areas or busy streets unnecessarily. But seriously, do they really think drivers can remember the locations of all the gantries and their operating hours and charges? It's just ridiculous! How about times when you accidentally made a wrong turn, got out of the ERP zone and had to make a U-turn into the ERP zone again to get to your destination and get beeped twice on the cashcard reader?

Moreover, with the sky-rocketing oil prices, would it be logical for drivers to be taking a longer and further route just to avoid ERP? Even primary school kids know how to do the math. Does ERP system prove to reduce the traffic congestions at the designated areas? Drivers who travel on the roads everyday will surely shake their heads in unison.

And my goodness, even parking rates have gone up with oil prices. Today I'm a true blue witness to this horror when I attended a full day course in Shenton Way. On my way to work, I had to pass by CTE ERP gantry ($4.00) and CBD ERP gantry ($2.50). If you think this is a lot, wait till you hear my parking fees. Parking at Hong Leong building from 8.45am to 5.15pm costs me a hefty $42.50! I guess that was the price I had to pay in exchange of saving 90 minutes today on travelling which otherwise have to be spent.

With this kind of charges on a daily basis, I can buy myself a jacket everyday. Oh well, I decided that tomorrow I shall go shopping for a new jacket instead of driving to town!

After driving for the past two years, I find that I have less patience and less tolerance for a waste of time. Pros and cons. I really enjoy the time that I have saved the past 2 years. Instead of taking 1 hour 15 minutes to travel to my office on public transport, I take only 15 minutes to drive there. Can you imagine my frustration the time I attempted taking public transport to work one day just to record the time taken?

Taking like 5 minutes to walk to the bus stop and waiting 15 minutes for the bus. I was still within the vicinity of my home and yet to start on my journey! And not counting the days when the bus decided to be late, the days you missed the train and have to wait for another 6 minutes for the next train, the days when the train was so jammed packed that you had to witness 4 trains passing by without being able to squeeze yourself on the train. And worse, when you finally squeezed on the train, you had to be skin to skin, butt to butt, face brushing against someone's hair, worse still, as a lady, being conveniently molested on the train.

Oh, thinking about all that made me think twice whether I would take the train tomorrow to save $50 or save $50 and endure the above grotesque scenario. Urgggghhhhh! I think I will pay the $50!

1 comment:

sweeteepye said...

Ya, having private transport is such a time saver and time is money and well, life per se. Two things stop me, the $$ and the environmental concerns. But I'm no treehugger, I acknowledge that I might get a car if I could easily afford one.