That’s (Still) not my Train…

The confident announcement of the imminent arrival of the 7:41 this morning got us all out of the waiting room this morning and into the chill of the platform. Once there, we all peered up the track to see what the train gods had in store for us today. They’ve been playing fast and loose with the train lengths for the last few days and nobody wants to be caught napping and having to end up sprinting the length of the platform to cram into the last carriage. The first train to round the bend was – oh horrors – a four car train, but as it didn’t slow down and its destination appeared to be Sorry, via Not in Service, we didn’t worry too much. The next train up was the right length but the wrong colour and not stopping either so we all stood back from the platform edge and waited some more. By the time the 7:41 – by now ‘the delayed 7:41’ – actually arrived, no fewer than four trains had thundered past empty and dark, off to the suburbs to pick up commuters to feed the endless appetite of Waterloo

Now obviously when you are doing important train-positioning work actual passengers – wanting to get on and off and such – are a bit of a nuisance. Much easier to trundle empty trains around, however many plaintive faces may stare at you from station platforms as you go. We know that. We know our place in the scheme of things. It’s just that – as we’re cooling our heels and every other bit of our anatomy while stranded on the platform – it’s a little frustrating to see train after train go by empty, and us summoned from the waiting room to watch them go by. Could they not at least give us a lift? Perhaps if we stuck out a thumb…

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5 responses to “That’s (Still) not my Train…

  1. Ah… you are somehow thinking the railway is run for your benefit. Tish! If they cancelled the 7.35 empties from Waterloo to Crewe/Bagshot/Bodmin/Bournemouth/Brookwood then all sorts of drivers and guards-ticket-money-persons rosters would have to be changed and someone would lose half an hour overtime and hey presto a good old fashioned ASLEF/RMT/other strike. So best just to leave them rolling happily empty past you and countless other chilly commuter type people really; sorry – just the way the railway has always worked. (They’ve never catered for anyone who is travelling against the rush hour flow – makes timetable planning very awkward that does, all those people going in the wrong direction, ought to be a rule against it, tell you what let’s not stop any trains – ah, that’s where we came in.)

  2. quite right, it would be a good service if only there were no passengers.

  3. Indeed, what was I thinking? We’re just the cargo…

  4. You’re not being cynical enough:

    “Oooh look, 4 empty trains comming down the track.”
    “Really? Cool, check this out!…’The train now approaching platform 2 is the 07:41 service to Waterloo calling at…'”
    “Haha! Look at them all, suckers!”
    “I know, fun isn’t it?”
    “My go next ok?”

  5. Yeah, and it gets us every time

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