Gautrainer: People of Sheep

2014-06-19 07:50

“Baba gau-sheep have you any wool – yes sir, yes sir, three bags full.”

We have become nothing more than sheep (writer hereof included I admit shamefully), herded in the direction of someone else's vision – we follow, we do not really say anything or complain because well, that is what sheep do and we are comfortable in our complacency.

We stand in an organized bundle, the train stops; we push in like sheep in the kraal, the blind guy and his guide dog has to wait for the next train. We look neither left nor right or up or down because there is no space.

We get out, catch the bus, – go home, repeat. There are no more thought processes – we do as instructed – or we do what the person or people next to us are doing – is this what we have become? We have nothing to be ashamed of or no reason to hang our heads, on the contrary, we should be proud and we should expect better.

If a person does only half of his/her job so do we, they get away with it – if someone gives new rules and equal rights then all the other values e.g. manners falls to the side (and manner are the building blocks of civil society apparently). If there is corruption and exploitation, that’s just the way it works – we can’t change it. And yet every change in this world, started with a small group of people.

New “sheep” announcements at the station:

“See how much you can save travelling in off peak hours, go speak to your boss about working flexi hours or ask him for a BIG raise!” So, we must get up earlier in order for the train not to be too full at certain times and go home later/earlier, so that the people managing the train do not need to inconvenience themselves by having to actually work out a better schedule?

“Dear bosses, have you considered letting your employees work flexi-hours? Research has shown that people travelling in off peak hours are more relaxed and more productive…” – the point is still, sorry, we cannot plan better, or we are not going to bother, change the times your people work. There are 50 000 of us, daily, if we should for just a few days say “hell no we won’t go” , maybe not take the four (4) cart train that they send in peak hours and simply step away ( a girl actually passed out from over -crowding a few days ago, on her feet).We pay the fare, so we can most certainly expect a service equal to what we are paying – but we sheepishly shrug our shoulders – what if we started expecting better? I am sure that better planning/scheduling will also assist in making us more “relaxed and productive”.

• I want to go so far as to challenge the management of Gautrain to take this train at 17H00 in the afternoon, try to get in at Midrand, not Park – and do not change the carts because you want to test my theory - own up to it, be brave, oh, and bring a corset you will need it to fit in the cart.

The problem is we hear all these announcements and think, eh, that is a plan – I can save so much money – can that 10% replace your quality time at home? Is it worth it? And remember that there has just been a tariff increase, so think again about the saving you think you are going to get, it’s already worked into the increase.

We the paying passengers are being inconvenienced - you get up at 04H00 to take the bus at 05H10 which most of the times arrive at 5H25. Why is bad planning on their side decreasing the value of our lives, and why do we allow it? Certainly it does not take a brain surgeon to see that the 8 cart train from Park to Hatfield is not full, almost never – why have 8 carts in peak time and then send the 4 cart train from Pretoria to Johannesburg “hello?” Could someone please buy a calculator, with the increase money, and do a survey and then plan according to how we travel and not what costs you less and gives a bigger bottom line.

Stop spending money on announcements on our manners like “my mother taught me..” and provide us with the service we pay for – maybe if everybody is not hot, bothered and almost fainting they will remember about manners.

Maybe if we try to be lions for a day instead of sheep for a week – we won’t be taken for a ride…

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