So today I decided to do the "right thing" make a few tree huggers happy along the way, yadda yadda yadda and so on. So we decided to take the Metro to Dubai Mall, even splurge a little and get two gold class NOL cards. First of all it took around an hour from Ibn Butta to reach Dubai Mall. No worries, little compromises, baby steps one makes, just takes getting used to, was just glad wasn't packed in like hot dogs in a can which I got to see when I got off.
Step out side, wait outside with a group of people in a clearly marked feeder bus stop, only to see two completely full buses pass us by without stopping. Great there is another bus station just out of view which has no signage leading to it, behind the station. Two buses standing, first one looked full, so hopped into the second one, swiped our new NOL cards and sat down. So did around 10, 15 other people. Only to disembarked by the driver saying its somehow its not allowed ? Buses can be only boarded 5 meters ahead of the same parking ! OKKKK ! Still ok, shrugging it off and some kind of misunderstanding, and by that time another bus had arrived in the front parking spot and was already full. But still manage to catch it, swipe our cards agains, basically paying twice for the same journey. This time crammed in like sardines, with a bunch of rowdy monobrowed teenagers on side and bunch of very loud friends on the other, spent around 20 minutes getting to the mall, no faults of anyone there. Just sheer volume of traffic and poorly designed and forever under construction roads.
On the way back, had to look around and do a bit of guess work to figure out where the bus station was. All the static and interactive information boards only mention parkings and taxis I think. Anyways found it. Hopped in again, the bus drove around in almost every road in the downtown complex in thick traffic, so that also took forever. Arrived at the station only to find a huge mob of people and no one being allowed to cross the gates. All the displays showed normal information, train timing etc etc. Just asking about people in the crowd, the general impression was that the platform is overcrowded so we'll only be allowed on after that thins out. OK, waiting around for 30 mins and not hearing a single train arrive or leave or any annoucements over the PA. I slipped out and found an emarati RTA employee, dressed in a smart black suit. Asked him whats going on, at first he was reluctant to say any thing but with a little sussing told me that there has been no train for the last two hours and we have gotten no information as to what is going on or when service will resume, basically nothing, and that after 20 minutes 1/2 hour the timings end for the day anyways so the Metro service for the day will officially close for the day. Metro ( RTA ) employees were doing a great job of crowd control by basically just staring at the crowd and if anyone did ask anything, reply was "15 minutes, 15 minutes"
Wonderful ! So now before it got too late to even get a cab, had to walk across to Shk Zayed Road to catch one. ending up paying a hefty sum for cab fare back home. So in the end, Took me twice the time and cost me more than twice the money and endless flustration to travel to and fro on a simple and easy route on RTA's public transportation. So next time someone mentions of doing the responsible/green thing and use public transportation to me is going to get shot ! From now on its strictly my gas guzzling V8, pumping out more green house gases, adding to the traffic because after all is said and done it is still faster and much cheaper !