Posts Tagged ‘Hearthache’

I had to run to the platform to catch the train. It had proved difficult getting the bulky display stand out of the taxi. Why Head Office couldn’t courier it to the Conference was beyond me.

I boarded just as the rotund train despatcher let a hearty peep from his whistle.

The stand took a while to store in the overhead shelf but after a short struggle, I was able to take my seat. An attractive woman in her thirties was next to me. We smiled at each other.

“Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen. Welcome aboard the 09.47 Service to Plymouth. This train will be calling at Edinburgh Waverley, Newcastle, Durham, Sheffield, Derby, Birmingham New Street, Cheltenham Spa, Bristol Temple Meads, Taunton, Exeter St David’s and Plymouth with a scheduled arrival time into Plymouth of 20.06. Thank you for travelling Cross Country My wife left me last night for another man. It’s come as a bit of a shock. Next stop will be Edinburgh Waverley.”

“Did I hear him correctly?” I asked my neighbour.

“He’s been talking about it since Aberdeen. Luckily no kids involved. Low sperm count apparently.”

As the train pulled away, I turned my attention to The Economist and read an article on new oil opportunities in the Congo Basin. The woman listened to her IPod and occasionally checked emails. Time passed smoothly.

“Ladies and Gentleman, we are now arriving into Edinburgh Waverley Station. This is where I first met Shirley. In Greggs. Both of us were reaching for the last spicy chicken slice. She let me have it. I knew there and then I had met my soul mate. Please ensure you have all your belongings with you and I wish you a safe onward journey .”

There was a feint sob over the PA system, “The Catering Manager informs me that the buffet no longer has any sandwiches.”

Whilst it was a sad state of affairs I did not believe a lack of comestibles warranted tears from a grown man. Then I recalled the poor lad’s travails.

It made me think. I’ve been married for nine years now. Or maybe ten. Couple of kids. Jonus and Milly. Eight and six respectively. We are happy. I think. I will ask the wife tonight when I get home.

My stomach growled. I could have done with a sandwich too.

The Guard appeared in the Carriage, checking tickets. I noticed two things about him. He had been crying and secondly, he was the ugliest man I had ever seen.

I doffed a metaphorical hat to Shirley. Brave women. Perhaps a touch myopic.

“Sorry for your troubles.”

“This month would have been our eighth anniversary. ”

He checked my tickets and moved on. He smelled of fish. At least he may be rich in Omega 3. I have a deficiency.

“No oil painting  is he?” my neighbour said. I did not demur.

We approached Newcastle. My destination.

I struggled to retrieve the display stand. It was lodged behind another passenger’s holdall. The woman was alighting here too. I felt her shoulder on my chest as she brushed past. We smiled at each other for a final time.

I wondered whether she fancied me.

As I stepped off the train, the Guard was singing;

“‘Cause I am your lady and you are my man.

Whenever you reach for me I’ll do all that I can…..”

I hope they sorted out the sandwich situation.

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