Wednesday, January 13, 2010

RIP, Franklin Dean Station

They closed the Franklin/Dean College station down permanently a couple of months ago - another cost-cutting measure, presumably. I can't say that the timing was great. That station was definitely being used - it was always packed with commuters, dozens of them, every weekday morning.

Especially on cold mornings, of course. Which is why the timing is so particularly bad. The Franklin/Dean parking lot is quite small, so a lot of people are dropped off at the station in the mornings. Now they have no place to stay warm while waiting for the train.

And god help them if a train is late, as they still sometimes are. At least once every couple of months a train has serious problems and has to be canceled, resulting in a wait of an hour or more until the next train comes by.

Apart from that, though, I have to say this: that was a really interesting old station. It was very shabby, with a lot of personality. There used to be little model trains in it, here and there; my son loved to look at them. The coffee and donuts weren't at all bad, and there was a nice rack of used books that weren't too expensive. The bathroom was tiny and, well, odd; a minuscule little sink, an old-fashioned radiator, and a few faded decorations.

Down a corridor in the back, there was a dark room with an old sofa on it. It didn't seem to be for the public. Sometimes several people were sitting on it, but I got the impression that it was for station personnel. It was strange, but interesting. The station was an oasis of old-fashioned quirky shabbiness in a world of impersonal grunge and decay.

I suppose it will just fall apart, now.

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