Tag Archives: commute

The 2.5 Hour Commute My Life 08 FEB 2013

baden powell drive protestIt wasn’t a particularly enjoyable Monday this week mind you. It started off innocuously enough, with me leaving home at 7am as per the norm and perfectly on time, but that pretty much only lasted until I joined up with the N2 from Sir Lowry, where an accident further down the line had caused a massive back-up of traffic which would happily keep me company for the next 40 minutes or so.

The traffic jam meant that I needed to stop and put in petrol as well, but once we finally made it out of Somerset West, the road opened up in front of me and I gunned it towards my usual off-ramp of choice, Baden Powell Drive.

Except, it turned out that this morning the authorities had closed it due to angry protests blocking the road (burning tyres are difficult to skirt around, so it makes sense to shut the road), meaning that instead I had to do a u-turn and head back on the N2 and into Cape Town to cut across via the M3 or M5. Radio traffic reports were not my friend as we header closer and closer towards Cape Town, happily informing me one after the other of accidents and broken down cars on the highways and the byways, literally damming up just about every conceivable route towards my final destination, and in the end, resulting in a full two and a half hour commute into work!

Two and a half hours! Needless to say, I was not a happy chappy.

Of course, Monday also happened to be the day that the electricians were coming in to install a power meter, which meant that they were waiting on me to power down the server room – which I was naturally now late for, never mind the fact that it took a little while for them to get the installation right, meaning the office was plunged into darkness on more than just one occasion.

And of course the modem server would kick up a problem during the process, the end result being that it was shudown which in turn meant a lovely hour of reconfiguring SMS Tools and the USB modems in order to get it back up and running properly again!

In addition to all of this, and on top of my already hectic workload, we discovered that Steve hadn’t completed any of the Distell work he was meant to do before he left the company at the end of January, meaning that I’ve now got an extra stack of development problems to deal with – which is just wonderful. Oh and some office politics raised its ugly head, which also guaranteed that I didn’t break out into a smile at any point in time.

Finally Tracy and I lost badly to Hypenica’s table tennis team of Ruairi and Tomy, and then to cap off a bad day (at least the drive home was painless apart from the horrible wind), I went and horribly lost pretty much all of my FIFA 13 games against Ryan in the evening.

So no, Monday wasn’t a particular favourite of mine this week as you could probably tell by now…

Cape Town Traffic My Life 23 MAY 2012

Wow, it’s much colder these mornings now that I’m not sporting my fluffy, rugged beard anymore. Chantelle’s hinting and the fact that Jessica was in real danger of forgetting her daddy’s handsome face prompted an impromptu shave-off on Sunday evening, leaving me a far colder person in return.

Anyway, I had completely forgotten just how hectic early morning Cape Town traffic into the city is, what with having the luxury travelling along the quiet Baden Powell coastal road for the last three and a half years since moving to Touchwork, which is of course situated in Westlake Business Park, handy when you’re driving in from the rather remote Gordon’s Bay.

The reason I braved the N1 Cape Town traffic this morning is a rather funny story mind you. Unable to source her stylish party boxes from the usual avenues, Chantelle was sitting in a bit of a pickle as we are just about out of our signature black boxes and with a market on Saturday, this is a bit of a disaster.

Luckily for us though, in her attempts to trace more boxes, she stumbled across the original packaging manufacturer, one Merrypak situated in Ndabeni, Cape town. So yesterday morning she convinced her mom to join her as they headed out that way to check out the factory shop and in the process successfully secure some much needed packaging for the market.

Of course, this infers that she was on an early shift yesterday, meaning that after her trip to Cape Town industria, it was straight back to work, with the result being that I only got to see her on her return home just before 21:00 last night.

Naturally the first thing she did was take the packaging out of the car, rip free a box in order to show me… and then curse like a sailor when it dawned on her that the person who retrieved her order from the back of the factory had in fact given her the wrong boxes – completely unusable in our context!

Frustrated, she called her mom to rant a little, and a short while after putting the phone down, her mom called us back to say that she and Monty would be able to make a trip through to Merrypak this afternoon in order to return the goods, provided of course that we could get the boxes to them before the afternoon.

And with Chantelle on morning shift today, that meant I had an opportunity to shine and earn brownie points with wifey, by selflessly offering to make a super early trip through to Bellville (leaving at 05:30), followed by a trip through to Westlake in order to undertake an early morning gym session at Steenberg Virgin Active, and then finally work.

All of which explains how it came to be that I sat in the horrible gnarled mess that is Cape Town traffic in the early morning hours, as I shot down the N2, crossed on the R300, delivered in Bellville, exited on the N1 towards Cape Town, hopped on the M5, switched to the N2, hopped onto the M3 and parked at the gym.

(To be honest, it was technically free flowing I suppose, but still, what a LOT of cars on the road – certainly not something I’m used to driving in!)

Which brings me to a completely different musing. We are currently seriously in the process of contemplating a move back to the Northern Suburbs, back to where our wonderful support structure of friends and family reside. But more on this in another post later this week. I need to get off this desktop at the gym and started heading over to work if I don’t want to be late…

Finally, a Commute Respite My Life 08 SEP 2011

At last, I have a respite in my daily grind of that horrible commute that sucks up two hours of my life each and every day, with the hour to Westlake via Baden Powell drive in the morning and then the hour back to Gordon’s Bay via Baden Powell in the evening.

I don’t enjoy the commute, despite the scenic route, and it was starting to get to me. I’m tired from the early morning starts, my fuel bill is too high, my poor car is clocking on the kilometers at a far faster rate than what I’m comfortable with, and my evenings are far shorter than what they should be!

I brought this up with Rudi the other morning just as an aside as we were chatting downstairs during one of our regular, informal SurveyThumb meetings which happens before the rest of the horde arrives at work. Out of the blue, he suggested that I start working a couple of days from home during the week then, and after a little deliberation, I put forward that Tuesdays and Thursdays would be most fair and cause the least disruption in the office.

From there it was straight onto the e-mail draft in order to highlight my motivations to Simon for the final go ahead, and seeing that there aren’t really any juniors left for me to mentor in the office any more, and the fact that I’m working completely isolated on a standalone project, the request was given the okay without any hassles, much to my delight of course!

Naturally, I promptly set about pulling a laugh out of Chantelle on the first Tuesday back home, by acting completely normal, packing my bag the evening before, going for my early morning walk, showering, eating breakfast and then giving her the customary goodbye kiss as I grabbed my bag and left for the office – except of course the office in question was the home one, meaning all I had to do was take a step around the corner.

It took a while to realize, but the look on her face when she finally dawned what was going on was absolutely priceless! :)

The day working from home itself was actually really, really productive, without all of the usual distractions that comes with an open plan office environment that I normally find myself in, and was further enhanced by some gorgeous weather outside, a walk down to the shops for lunch and then a walk with Chantelle later in the evening to pick up Jessie from the daycare to close things off.

So yeah, Tuesdays and Thursdays have just become my favourite work days in the week! :)