February Challenge -15: Once upon a time

Well with further reference to the perfect(ish) solitary day.

Once upon a time there was a man travelling from Rome to Manchester. He didn’t mind travelling alone, because he liked people watching; the opportunity to think, draw and generally watch the world go by. This is the story of a couple of incidents which happened in the space of one day, which made him smile, grimace (a little) but mainly gave him material.

The Game of Life . . .

I arrive in Roma Termini, and knowing that platform for the airport train is about 500 metres away, a distance which makes catching the 8.22 possible I amble to Platform 28. I walk alongside the train, ready to get on what I assume is the 8.52, when I realise that the train alongside me is, in fact, the 8.22 some 10-15 minutes late.  But I react too slowly, the doors lock and the train glides away from me……

RJ – 0  LIFE -1

I eventually arrive at Termini but there is chaos in departures. I arrive at point 1. along with two young and equally bewildered Italians. A contains about huddle of about 70 people, while B contains an orderly queue of about 12. The other two obediently follow the partially indicated route, but due to the incomplete barrier maze, I head directly to 2., where an official tells me to wait. Others push passed me and arrive to join the two lads at the end of B. Suddenly the official returns, ushers me through and I arrive alone at security 3. As they are puzzled (nay, irritated) by my rapid access, I shout to the lads that if their tickets are not Ryanair they can get straight through.  They head for 2 along with another 27 people, and a scrum develops as I slip quietly away . . ..

RJ – 1.5 (at very least)  LIFE -1

Everybody complains about the train service in the UK. I ask for a single to Parbold. The man gives me two tickets and charges me a total of 5.40 pounds.

‘Isn’t this a direct train?’ I asked, somewhat puzzled; a common occurrence during travel, I find.

He replies;’ Yes but on one ticket it would cost over 10. ‘ and adds something about crossing into different regions.

‘Thank you’ I said. ‘I can have a cup of coffee with that!’

He smiled;’I think you can have a bottle of wine with that.’

I did.

RJ – 2.5  LIFE -1

A good result . . . .


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