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  • Illustrations by Mr Nick Hardcastle
  • Words by Mr Dan Davies, the constant traveller

According to recent research, by the time I retire (which going on the estimates of my financial adviser will be some time around the age of 87), I will have wasted well over a year and a half of my life commuting through London. In doing so, I will have spent in excess of £66,000 on experiencing close and personal time with people I neither know or want to be intimate with. I am a Londoner born and bred, and as such I have tried commuting in all its forms (well, not strictly all as I maintain the city is simply too big to be expected to walk to work) and, according to another study, suffered worse stress levels than riot police and fighter pilots while travelling in rush hour.

Commuters in major cities across the world (possibly with the exception of Copenhagen and Bogotá, which both seem to get it right) will doubtless empathise with the London transport system's many tribes. From harassed, world-weary looking people trying to maintain some semblance of personal space and dignity while wearing a stranger's armpit as a face mask, to those trying to stop the pulsing veins in their forehead from spelling out "Rage" as another full bus splashes rain water on their suit trousers, ours is a multifaceted world of joy.