Friday, 28 January 2011

Journeys to the great north...

What a journey…

After working my butt off during the working day so that a request to leave early to catch a train to Scotland didn’t sound too cheeky, it all went to pot…
I was granted the permission to leave early, and at 5pm (when I was meant to be leaving) I got caught up laughing and joking with the bosses (you can never leave a moment of banter with the bosses half way through…)and when I looked at my watch, it was 5:20pm.  I started to panic.  My train was as 6:57pm, I still needed to get to Euston from CharingX AND get into one of the queues to get my tickets from the “fast ticket” machines. 

As I RAN out of the office, I realised that the bra I was so impressed with in the shops FAILED me… its nifty option of ‘straps or no straps’ blew up in my face.  The sodding bra strap unbuckled and draped over my shoulder leaving my right breast completely unsupported.  Did I mention that I was running?  My word, I had to haul ass to the basement to get my suitcase and make it to the underground whist pulling my heavy suitcase with my left hand, supporting my handbag on my left shoulder and supporting my right breast with my right hand! 

I managed to make it onto the tube and had fastened my blazer shut so that it was less obvious that I was hanging about.  When I got to Euston, I forced my way through the crowds and made it to the escalator only to be placed behind this little old man who didn’t seem to know that when you get to the top of an escalator (he probably refers to them as ‘moving staircases’) you need to keep walking... poor man, I ended up falling into him when the escalator levelled out at the top, and the person behind me falling into me and so on.  We ended up in a heap.  I rushed to the fast ticket machines only to be faced with a lot of queues.  I sweet talked myself to the front of a line occupied only by men  and managed to get my tickets with relative ease and ran (still very much unsupported) to  the platform that was being called for my train.  Once I got to the platform and lugged my suitcase down the set of steps, I gave my ticket to the ticket mistress  and while I was searching for my young persons railcard, she tapped me on the shoulder… “this ticket is valid for travel tomorrow”…

Well.  I nearly collapsed.  I was sweating, my breast was sore and I was out of breath.  I couldn’t believe it.   She started scribbling away on the ticket while my face was still in shock and anger, and gave it back to me saying “don’t worry love, this should sort you out.  Get on and have a safe journey”.  How lovely!  I profusely started to apologise for my choice of language and fit of rage that she had to witness and I ran to get to the carriage where my seat was waiting for me – 54A.  It was only when I got on board that it struck me that the seat allocation was valid for tomorrow and therefore tonight, 54A, was dedicated to someone else - someone who made their booking correctly…  Well, I thought I would just sit down regardless until someone asked me to move.  So many people reserve and then don’t turn up.  This might be one of those occasions. 

I located the baggage rack and made my way to my seat where this extremely portly gentleman ( massive, I’m not going to lie) was sitting and I had to ask him if I could get past him so I could get into my seat at the window.  I would have normally just suggested that he move in to my seat and I take his, but gauging by his body-size, this would have been an exercise (and his only exercise) that he would rather not take part in.  I sat down, started to catch my breath (and breast) and de-sweat a little. 

I started making myself comfortable and reached up to the little reading lamps overhead, and as I switched on the light, I caught a glimpse of the digital panel with the seat numbers.  I was sitting in 45A not 54A and this poor gentleman was about to have to pull his sides out from under the armrests and let me out. 

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Interfacing... Optional

On the tube, I would say roughly 80% of those on it have their heads buried in a newspaper or magazine (fake reading or not) and more and more (sadly so) focused on their games for the iPhone…  So, you don’t really get to see many faces – just the tops of heads.  Some follically challenged and others who could do with a touch more moisture on their scalps. 

Often, you end up focussing on the one same person – whatever the reason - for the duration of your commute.  I don’t know why this is but it is true.  We start to observe… The shoes? Nice.  The jacket? Very nice.  Top? Just lovely.  Handbag? Well, let’s just say that if she had a looser grip on it I’d bloody well knick off with the damn thing!!

Then she looks up.


With headphones on, I honestly can’t say whether my gasp was in my head or whether it was out loud…

What could the poor person have done that was so bad in a past life that made her deserved of having a face like that?  I think I have seen pugs with eyes deeper set than hers and she had a mouth that could rival any collie lacking 14years worth of dental attention.    

Panic sets in.

Where the HELL do you look???!

You start to quickly search over all the adverts on the carriage – preferably the ones with the most text -so to keep you occupied and focussed on something as long as possible other than what is in front of you.  Maximum effort is needed to lose the facial expressions that clearly show how shocked you are and quite frankly, a little wierded out…