'Pretty Normal'

According to Transport for London, buses were attempting to run a full service and the £8 ($14) congestion charge for automobiles traveling into the city's center was waived for a second day. The large transfer station Kings Cross remains closed for the investigation. Transport officials went on to ask customers to remain vigilant and to question unattended items on trains or buses. Euston station was evacuated as well Friday morning but services were later resumed after authorities determined that all was safe.

On Ladbroke Grove in West London, just a block off of the famous Portobello Road, buses seemed to be running at near capacity heading into central London. One commuter, Matt Holtz, who works in IT in the west London borough of Hammersmith, looked a bit uncertain at the bus stop and then walked away. Wearing jeans and sneakers and listening to an iPod, Holtz looked ready to hoof it the three miles to work. "I am a little hesitant to get on the bus, but if I was heading to central London, I would probably not take the bus in today," he added. Holtz says he, along with many Londoners, always suspected that something like what happened on Thursday would take place, but he says he was still shocked when he heard about it: "These bombings were made even worse because it had been such a happy day before when we heard we got the 2012 Olympics." The attacks occurred less than 24 hours after the International Olympic Committee announced that London would host the '12 summer games.

The tales of people taking epic walks home Thursday night--my taxi driver told me one man he picked had walked 3-1/2 hours before he hailed the cab--led many commuters to choose comfort in terms of footwear as they trudged to work Friday morning in the July sun. There seemed to be more bicycle riders than usual, and the police presence was much more visible with officers walking two in a row around the city.

At Oxford Circus, a major thoroughfare for shoppers and Soho office workers, the station was not as bustling as most mornings but there was definitely still a strong pulse of pedestrian traffic. Stores and coffee shops like Starbucks that had been shut yesterday were back open for business and employees like Roopa Raghunandan, who works at the department store Dickens & Jones, says that though she was "very nervous and a bit scared getting on the train, I had to come to work so I had no choice."

Dominic Gardnier, who works for the Cartoon Network in Soho and traveled into central London from the south of the city, admits to being slightly nervous about his trip. "Everyone was calm and it seemed a bit more quiet than usual but pretty normal." He believes that it was not a coincidence that the bomb blasts went off a day after the Olympic announcement in Singapore. "I feel that was the purpose, that that was the target and it was logical that the attack happened when the eyes of the world were on us."

Shola Adegoroye, who works for the National Health Service, says her trip from north London was "quite uneventful" and that she was not nervous at all about traveling on the tube, as Londoners call their subway. "What can I say, I have to get to work and most people were just sitting quietly reading the papers and seemed to be thinking of the day ahead." She adds, "It is such a shame about the Olympics as we were so happy about it, so that has died away, but I think it will pick back up and [Londoners] will show how resilient we are."

Malcolm Boxall, who works for an ad agency, also reported a quiet commute, and said he felt bad for Prime Minister Tony Blair. "He has a horrendous job--one day celebrating the Olympic bid and then the next day having to reassure the nation." As passengers walked out of the tube station, a sign on a board used for special notices had a note of congratulations to citizens for backing the bid saying THANK YOU LONDON. Soon enough that board will have an acknowledgement of the tragedy and will no doubt be again thanking commuters--this time for their calm during such a horrendous time.

Editor's Pick