On my love for the Moscow Metro

It probably sounds silly, how much I love the metro. Maybe it’s due to the small town girl effect- I come from a town of 10,000 that used to have a taxi, but other than that, has no public transport whatsoever. I think it’s more than that, though.

I remember clearly sitting at orientation, being asked if we had been on a metro and told to realize that the Moscow metro was completely different than whatever experience that may have been. The metro was a hot topic for the rest of orientation, and I was honestly terrified. I knew at that time I had an hour commute to school, and I had no clue if I could handle it. Like I said – small town girl.

My first experience on the metro was honestly terrifying- dealing with purchasing a troika (unlimited rides on public transport for a month) in Russian and then figuring out how exactly to use the metro seemed impossible. After that, it just became exciting- we were taking selfies and being amazed by all the lines and stations on the map.

Now, I’ve been here six weeks and spend at least an hour on the metro a day. I can honestly say I still love it. The feeling of passing so many people, each of whom has their own station to go to and their own lives waiting for them after the transitive underground, is somehow very comforting. It’s also an amazing place for people-watching. I’ve seen some very interesting people on the metro, talked with a few, and one time, a lady even fell onto me while having a seizure. That last one was terrifying- she was fine- but point is, I can’t think of a single place with as many different, interesting people as the Moscow metro. I also find it very interesting to see how the general public changes depending on where in the city you are.

Of course, the metro is impressive as more than entertainment- I’ve honestly never seen anything as effective as the Moscow metro. In the morning, trains come within 90 seconds of each other, and they hardly ever are delayed or stopped in tunnels. Occasionally stations are closed for reconstruction, but there’s always a way around it.

Like I said, it might be silly to love a public transit system so much, but in 60 days, I’ve never once gone straight home from school – we’ve always found somewhere new to explore. I don’t think that any of our new adventures would’ve been possible without the metro. I love the fact that no matter where I want to go, there’s almost certainly a metro station nearby. It also helps that the metro has free wi-fi 🙂 The convenience and relative comfort of the Moscow metro make the daily commute to school enjoyable.

By: Anna Ivanov

Program: Advanced Russian Language & Area Studies Program (RLASP)

Term: Summer 2015


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