I was heading off to the station this evening when I found myself almost breaking into a sprint before I remembered and stopped myself. It’s just that sprinting is my conditioned reaction to the sight of a 65 appearing along Kew Road. Even after five years, it still gets me – it used to be my signal to switch from my normal homewards rambling speed to all-out uphill dash in my bid to reach the bus stop before it did. Realistically, I knew that if I wasn’t at the foot of the bridge before it hove into view, I wasn’t going to catch it – but there was always that slim chance. And as the alternative always seemed to be a twenty minute heel-and-everything-else cooling wait at the bus stop for the next three to come along (Sod’s law* clearly states that the bus you just miss is always the last of the bunch of three, never the first of them), I always sprinted and the passengers on the top deck would be treated to the sight of me galloping along beside them, leaping and waving in my attempts to alert the driver to my presence and burning desire to get on to the bus. Sometimes the bus would stop, sometimes it wouldn’t, sometimes it would stop, wait until I had almost got to the stop and then drive off doing the bus equivalent of a laugh.
Generally I like buses for one-off trips in the evening or at the weekend, but I would loathe to go back to commuting on one regularly. They combine all the worst features of driving to work (the traffic) with all the worst features of taking the train (the waiting) plus a few special bus tortures of their own (on the 65, apart from the fact that some of the buses leaked when it rained, and others smelt of mould, the worst thing was the Jehovah’s witness who used to roam the upper deck offering people something to read and then trapping them in conversation for the rest of the journey). I would far rather take SouthWest Trains in the morning. I’d even rather take the Silverlink in the morning. In fact, I’d rather take a Silverlink train to the moon than have to get on a bus every day on my way to work. Even if that did mean being stuck for five hours in a geostationary orbit due to the wrong kind of gravity on the line.
And yes, this is all a very long winded way of saying that it is a slow blog day today and I have absolutely nothing to complain about during my journey to and from work. Bloody SouthWest Trains …
* Transport Amendment(1984) section 12; para iii