Saturday, 4 February 2012

Train etiquette part quatre.

I spent three days in London this week, that meant plenty of to and fro-ing on Eastmidlands mainline service...and we all know how well I get on with trains. My first whinge is in relation to the price of tea, totally outrageous. £1.70 for boiled water and one peppermint tea bag!! A disgrace. I've made a pact with myself to carry my own teabags, surely they won't charge me for water?!

Now onto the real etiquette related content, so as I boarded the 15.15pm back from London st pancras on Friday afternoon I anticipated a busy train, what I did not anticipate was a cattle carrying experience. People were jammed in the aisles, people were practically having to stand in the toilet. It was jam packed. So, the only available place to settle was in an entryway, not exactly comfortable and with a two hour journey ahead I wasn't happy. I was momentarily even more unhappy when three youths attempted to bed down in my chosen location with plastic bags full of wine. The look on my face encouraged them to try another doorway. Then the saviour announcement came 'due to a very busy train today please use the first class carriages and take any seat available'. Like a cheetah I lunged at the doors that divided my doorway and first class and claimed a chair...phew maybe this journey wouldn't be so bad after all. Then it happened, a man was actually looking for his reserved seat, he was wading through the masses to find his reservation..please don't let it be my seat, please...then he focuses on me 'sorry that's my seat' me 'ummmm sorry I have a seat reservation too that I can't get to (lie)' I panicked, I couldn't move, I couldn't stand for two hours! As my colleague reminded me afterwards the actual truth was that reservations were cancelled because the train was so busy, but when the pressure was on I crumbled. I didn't move and I ended the conversation by dismissing the seat claimer with my eyes. I know I'm awful. I moan about train etiquette and it seems I'm guilty of being a horror of a passenger too...yikes. Maybe I'll be more tolerant of train behaviour after committing a faux pas myself. Maybe not (wink).

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