Tonight traffic in the Elmsford area was a mess! Some of the worse I've ever seen, not counting around Christmastime or during a serious snow storm. The afternoon's torrential rains closed parts of the Saw Mill River Parkway, the main north/south route (except for trucks) in Elmsford which put unusual amounts of cars on Rt. 9A. There was also some serious flooding in Rockland -- a friend of a co-worker emailed him cell fone photos of flooded Rockland streets with water over the roofs of stalled cars -- and that caused back ups on the NYS Thruway and Tappan Zee Bridge. That in turn created a spill back effect onto I-287, the main east/west route through Elmsford. That caused motorists to detour on Rt.119 creating a huge jam.

All the buses I saw -- the 1W, the 5, 11, 13, 14 -- were running late, the 13s about 20-25 minutes. (That pretty nearly preserves the 13's twenty-minute headway, the buses are just in the wrong order.)

Here's the part where it got wierd.

I stopped at a Dunkin Donuts on Rt.119 to have an iced latte after work. When I came out a 13-Ossining was maybe twenty feet past the stop. Too far for the driver to open up I suppose. mad

So I decided to walk down to the CVS in Elmsford Square, get a couple of things and take the next 13 that came along. Only as I started walking I noticed I was making better time than the bus. In fact I could've gotten on the bus at the next stop. We both got there at the same time. It's about six blocks from the Dunkin Donuts to CVS (they're short blocks) at Elmsford Square and I got there ahead of the bus.

I briefly considered boarding the 13 at the Square but by then I had noticed the bus (it was an Orion V, the 604) had a swinging load, it was packed. (Not unusual for the 13-Ossining as only one rush hour 13 out of three runs beyond Tarrytown to Ossining.) I decided it wouldn't be too smart to board a crowded bus stuck in heavy, slow moving traffic. I went in the CVS.

When I came out I waited about ten minutes and a 13-Tarrytown came along. Plenty of seats. The traffic was still pretty bad but we did okay. Very few people got on or off before Tarrytown. When I got off on Wildey Street by the McDonald's, I decided to pick up a coffee-to-go. While I was on line I looked out the window and saw a bus coming off the loop from the train station. It was 604 heading to Ossining, I had caught up to him!

That's some serious traffic!