This morning New Yorkers woke up to the news that the city’s entire public transportation system has been shut down by an illegal strike. Millions of people scrambled to find ways to get to school, work, etc. Despite their best efforts, many were unsuccessful.
Only a few days before Christmas and Hanukkah, chefs and waiters struggled to reach restaurants where they waited in vain for diners to arrive. Bartenders hiked to work only to spend the day time drumming their fingers and polishing glasses as one holiday party after another was cancelled.
Doctors and nurses were unable to arrive in operating rooms. Defendants didn’t show up in court. Teachers were unable to get to their classrooms.
Of course, those who suffered the most were the lowest-paid workers; those teetering on the edge of poverty, those who don’t receive any benefits or union protection, those who don’t have the options of working from home or simply taking the day off. For them, this was a day of frustration and lost wages.
It took me nearly five hours to reach work this morning and nearly three hours – and $20 in cab fares – to get home. An exhausting day for many people, for many reasons. I hope, for all our sakes, that the strike is settled soon.