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Monday, February 28, 2005

I love traffic! (Ask me why...)

For most of the past quarter century, Aaron Nayer has caught a bus from East Brunswick, N.J., before sunrise each weekday and been transported to Manhattan's fumey Port Authority bus terminal. From there, he walks clear across town to his office.

It's a routine that Mr. Nayer wouldn't give up for the world, even when he ends up sitting next to a smelly person or a blathering cellphoner. "I lose myself in that commute," says Mr. Nayer. "I don't mind if it's 50 minutes, which is the norm, or four hours. I become more serene on that bus."

The trip lets him shed the tensions and responsibilities of both home and work, including his "wonderful but needy" greyhound, Fleetwood Macabee, and his loving but occasionally demanding wife. "I'm married to three or four personalities," he says, chuckling, "and you never know which one is going to greet me at the door."

Long reviled as a hazard of the modern world, commuting has become for some a joyous asylum from the stressful rigors of the day. Occupying a netherworld between the home and office, it's governed by neither realm. That gives practitioners time to engage in learning (Mr. Nayer reads as many as three books a week), spiritual enlightenment or fantasy.

"That everybody dreads their commute and it's hell on wheels is not necessarily supported" by the data, confirms Alan Pisarski, who's currently writing the third book in his series "Commuting in America." In fact, he says, "there's an immense section of the public who are driving over hill and dale and smiling at the sunset and birds."

READ: Why Some People Cherish Their Difficult Commutes

Comments: Post a Comment

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