Passport to Pimlico

I had a rare foray into town today, which meant the Victoria line in the early afternoon – but not early enough that somebody hadn’t already vomited in the carriage for our delectation. They’d done so tidily enough in a plastic bag, but then left it on the train. Curiously enough, nobody had reported it as a security hazard – but then I certainly wouldn’t want to be there when that controlled explosion was carried out. Talk about a dirty bomb…

But that wasn’t all. I was sitting in the front carriage of the train and no sooner had we set off from Vauxhall than the door into the driver’s compartment opened and a guy peered out and started looking around confusedly. He popped back in for a minute and then re-emerged, frowning. Finally he asked if the announcements were coming on. At that moment the dulcet tones of the Victoria Line Lady chimed in to announce that the next station was Pimlico. I pointed upwards. He looked more confused. ‘What’s she saying?’ he said. ‘Something about Tate Britain,’ I said. He went back into his cab and the train slowed and stopped at the next station. One of the other passengers frowned. ‘You’d think he know where he was by now,’ he said. ‘Oh well, it’s not as though he has to steer it or anything.’

I’d like to think it wasn’t actually the driver – or at least that he’d left someone in charge of the brakes while he was out chatting with the cargo. But he was an awfully large chap and, while the cabs of the trains aren’t tiny, I’m not sure there’d be much room in there for someone else.


4 responses to “Passport to Pimlico

  1. The Victoria line does not need drivers. The trains are fully automatic.

    However, they still need guards to make sure the doors are closed fractionally early so as to pincer the maximum number of passengers trying to make a last minute dash for the train. That level of skill and judgement is beyond the capabilities of a computer as yet

  2. heh heh – the lifts at Elephant & Castle seem to manage – maybe they’re trialling the technology there?

  3. haha I love that guy assumed the driver needed to know where he was.

    And thanks for the mental image of the controlled explosion. ew!

  4. good image, isn’t it? Still, not as bad as it actually smelled in an enclosed carriage…

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