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  • Friday, February 15, 2008


    The metro near where I live has the longest single track escalator in this hemisphere. My nearly only exercise everyday is walking up and down it. At first, the hike used to wind me, but as I've lost weight and gotten used to the climb, it's not too bad anymore, even in heels. (Read here for one WP writer's account of tackling various metro escalators, including my hometown behemoth.)

    But yesterday, one of the three escalators was being worked on, one was halted (as in, it was stairs), and the third was working just fine.

    Now, you would think that anyone in their right mind, in that situation, would decide to halt the DOWN escalator to use as stairs and leave the UP escalator running.

    Um, no. Not our metro workers.

    So as we all got off the metro and headed for the escalators, there was this massive logjam as people were confronted with the reality of having to hike up the stairs. The station is 196 feet underground, and the escalator itself is 508 feet long. Most people pulled to an abrupt stop, stood there for a few seconds and then turned to go to the elevator.

    Like I said, logjam.

    Well, SM and I decided to hike it. We always walk it when it's running. A typical hike up the escalator is about 100-107 steps, depending on how fast you're going (the faster you walk, the more stairs you climb because you're doing the work, not the escalator).

    Well, when it's not moving, it's 174 serious steps. Phew.

    And we made it without stopping. Thank goodness I was not wearing heels. I definitely would not have made it. By the top, both of us were winded, and the back of our throats hurt from breathing the coldish air.

    If you want to see what it's like to just ride the escalator, see below (not a very exciting video, but it shows you just how long this sucker is).

    If it's out again tonight, I don't know what I'll do 'cuz I'm wearing heels. Ooof.

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