Early morning commuting can be very relaxing if you have the right connections. Being a student at two Universities and working at the same time, means I chose to commute everyday – like every other Swiss. Before starting a semester at Uni, students have to decide whether or not they want to live around the campus or commute from their residential town. Same goes for job situations.
Perhaps the best compromise is to find a town that remains central to both your distances (in my case Basel and Zurich) and giving you access to neighbouring towns as well. This is something that as Swiss we can well imagine (without much grumbling) as trains are barely ever late and everything ticks on time! While working for the UNOPS – I have even commuted from Olten to Vernier (Geneva) on a daily basis (door to door 3 hours) for the entire duration of my internship. It was easy. Far better than driving from Behala to some remote area in Saltlake that would anyway take you longer cause traffic!
Fact is, I love commuting. It’s really an opportunity to clear my mind and prepare myself for work or after work. It’s the time I need to detach. But that isn’t how everyone sees it. My ex for example, hated it. Basel to Bern was too much for him and the only thing he appreciated me for was “truly your patience and resilience of being a Pendler!” Eventually we had to move to Olten, cause people who commute far distances would eventually complain about the annoyances that comes with it and some of these people will choose to move closer even though they were originally at driving distance (first world and spoilt child problems).
However, most people who commute and enjoy this travel time to unwind, will chose to continue commuting for as long as possible. Perhaps it’s our love for trains, perhaps it’s our hankering for new faces, perhaps we are just weird – but the fact remains, it’s a great way to unwind and trains are better than cars anyway!