I like to be punctual and that goes doubly so at the moment, what with being away and catching public transport again after 30 odd years of not stepping foot on a bus or train.
Well, old mate at Portsmouth train station the other day, just about gave me heart failure. The train pulled in, everyone got out and I was going to get on – as you do.
But no, not on my watch girlie – this train guy starts waving his hands around and yelling, no, no, no, you can’t get on. I started looking around, like a bloody idiot, thinking, wonder who’s doing the wrong thing? Oh shit, no-one else doing anything, it’s me! But what’s he on about?
So, I’ m standing there with my backpack (huge backpack, that I’d never be able to put on my back anyhow, don’t know why I bought it, but that’s a story for another day) – sorry, where was I? Yes, one hand on the rail and the other fiercely gripping the backpack from hell ready to use every muscle I own to get it and myself on the train.
Yeah, no, not going to happen just yet he informs me. You can’t get on yet, it hasn’t been cleaned out and carded. WTF?? Since when do they do that?
Here I’ve been congratulating myself on sussing out this train situation, working out which one to catch, what platform to catch it from, being on time, leaving your big luggage in a special spot (and hope like hell no-one pinches it), and now they go and change the rules on me.
Now, you may remember I liked not feeling conspicuous in Brighton, well, hello, I might as well have put a big flashing sign on my head – and the ones having a chuckle didn’t even try to make me feel better either. Oh well, lesson learned and it could have been worse I’m sure.
NOTE TO SELF – don’t be the first one to get on the train!!
PS I also found out, you don’t sit in the seats with a little card sticking out the top of them – they’re reserved. Now there’s another trap for the un-initiated, don’t you think?