Guest Post #1 - Trains

Charlie has kindly allowed me to post on her blog (thanks Charlie), now I was initially struggling for a blog topic, and then I went for a train ride.

Now, I don't use the train every day.  Train trips for me come perhaps once or twice a month at most, and are still something slightly of an adventure - I've always travelled mainly on foot, on the bus, or in a car, so a train journey still holds a frisson of excitement for me.

However, it was the Leeds train back to Hull.

The Leeds train back to Hull is always overcrowded with people, and this one was no exception.  Late getting into Leeds from Manchester, the promise of a booked seat held by a little orange rectangular piece of card I knew would be broken - indeed, I wasn't even in the right carriage, as just getting on the train was a feat. The train reminds me of the underground in London, except that while with the underground you might not get on a train, and have to wait three or four minutes for another one (which any Londoner will tell you is a fate worse than death), you're looking at an hour to get another Hull train from Leeds, so it's even more vital that you get on SOMEHOW.

Standing, looking around the train, I wondered about the emergency hammer available to break through windows in case of emergency.

If you're not familiar with them, the emergency hammer (at least on this train) is a green plastic handle, with a pointy bit.  It looks a bit like a blowtorch, or maybe a futuristic laser weapon of some kind. I think I saw Captain Kirk shoot a Klingon with one once.

Yet next to it, in the instructions for using the hammer, (have a guess - yes, it was firstly get the hammer, and secondly break the window - good job there were instructions, I wouldn't want to get them the wrong way round) in the instructions there was a picture of a normal claw hammer, the sort of thing we all have in our toolboxes. Surely this is just confusing.

Happily I made it home without needing to use the hammer, and life is good.

Mike, when not drinking, sleeping, eating, or drinking, blogs at