In a fit of SkyTrain nostalgia, last week I asked about your first ride experience on SkyTrain.
And after 309 votes (one of the highest vote numbers we’ve had in a long time!), 59% said they first rode the SkyTrain when they were kids!
The next most popular answer was “as an adult,” which claimed 22% of the vote, followed by “as a teenager” with 18%. Just 1% said they had never been on SkyTrain before (if not, you should! it’s a lot of fun!).
Everyone had such charming stories in the comments, too—stories of kids riding public transit always warm my heart, at least! Here’s Reva:
In the spring of 1986, before Expo was officially opened, our Grade 6 teacher took our class on a field trip to Expo Centre, and thought we should check out the new SkyTrain on the way. We walked all the way from our school to Nanaimo Station, then rode the train down to Main Street Station.
Our class had a whole car to ourselves (lucky for the general public!). I remember being fascinated by the sound of the motor and the door chimes, and being amazed that there was no driver.
I also remember our poor teacher frantically running around the train trying to prevent 25 11-year-olds from pushing all the cool door handle and emergency buttons!
And Tim Choi:
When I was 5 years old, I was still living in Hong Kong. In preparation for immigration to Canada the year after, my parents and I visited Vancouver for a few days (weeks??). That was when I first encountered “train-that-hangs-in-sky”, as the literal translation of SkyTrain is termed in Cantonese. Upon my return to Hong Kong and kindergarten, one of our activities was to name a mode of transportation. As you can imagine, my teacher was not much amused by my answer of “train that hangs in sky” – “Such does not exist!” she exclaimed.
Oh, and Ed!
My first SkyTrain ride was in the early 2000s, when I was around 9 years old. Me and my mom would always go out to New Westminster (we reside in Richmond), and it was quite a long trip! This was back when there was no 98 B-Line, so we had to take one of the Richmond buses that went to Burrard Station.
From there, we would take the SkyTrain to New Westminster, where we would visit the River Market. I have fond memories of a particular shop, where I would get my favourite dessert: ice cream with M&Ms! I also recall a bookstore nearby, where I did buy a few kid’s books.
All in all, it was good fun, and I think the trips really opened me up to public transit. You just never know what will happen the next time you step on a bus, train, or seabus. And that is why, it may sound silly to some, but one of to-dos on my list is to personally travel every TransLink bus route. Still a way to go, but there will definitely be no problem getting motivated for that. :)
(Best of luck with your quest, Ed — keep me posted if you manage to ride all of the routes!)
There were many more stories like this, and I wish I could showcase everyone’s in this post, but instead I will simply urge you to visit the comments of the previous post and enjoy yourself :)
Thanks to everyone who participated — this was a lovely trip down memory lane!