Thursday, April 10, 2014

return of the train adventure (preview)

hi there

i am not too well, really. the eye infection i showed off medication for in the last post seems to work by making it worse first, which is interesting. also an intermittent and uncomfortable headache seems to be my companion for the day.

i have tried a few pills and a nice lie down, but find my brain, or mind, or what you like, racing away with all sorts yet nothing specific. i have fired up the child's toy, then, to do a blog post as i lie here, as i suspect this is what people who have similar complaints to me do to see if they can fix it.

more than one conversation this week - actually two, maybe three - has led me to discover that my train adventure posts of last year were in particular popular and well liked. how happy it is, then, that by chance i have another train adventure imminent. whilst the upcoming adventure is by chance, the preview of it i can give today is partially deliberate for the blog, but mostly to take google to task on times.

that above, ladies and gentlemen, the path and road on which i did today walk up to the train station and shall soon walk again to the same. yes; walk. this shall all be somewhat different from most of my other adventures, if not all of them, then, as there will be no car interfered with or deployed. unless it is a really rainy day when i go, then i might drive up or get a lift if my (considerably) better half is of a mind to drop me off.

why did i go up today towards a train station if i were not actually taking a train? partially reconnaissance to check where it is and that, but also to engage in a battle of time and wits with google about just how long it would take one to stride there.

google, you see, on their maps thing, alleged that it would take an exact and specific amount of estimated minutes for me to stroll from a particular address to the train station. i disputed that they could give a suggestion of the amount of time with such certainty. so i sort of did some timing.

what was the result of my timing? well, even allowing for me stopping to take these fine pictures you see (the subject of the pictures are fine, i claim no genius or skill in how they were taken), i did the walk in a good deal time less than what google had argued. so smoke, that, google. although me starting from a different place than where google's timing commenced might have had some partial bearing. i got stood chatting to a dear friend on the way, you see - hi Mandy if you are reading, lovely to see you. so i had to stop the timing and start it again at a different point.

on that note, i saw a good deal of dear friends yesterday. a seriously large amount. some in the best of circumstances, some in the saddest of them. it was great to see each and every one, though.

so i was right in a real sense as google's timing was well off; not assuming as they did that i would start from a different spot to time. google were also quite wrong not to allow time for standing and having a chat with people, and indeed wrong not to allow time to stand and take a picture or two. yes, including a selfie. just the one, and here it is.

selfies were, if i recall, an integral - if not popular - element of my previous train adventure stories. despite here in England them not being all that keen on people randomly taking pictures for no apparent reason, i will do my best to get a few in when the full train adventure, as it were, "happens". if you don't like them then you can just skip those pictures.

it was around the point that i took the above picture that it sort of dawned on me that i had eaten little, drank less and had taken some substantial medication prior to my journey. i was feeling parched, as in spitting feathers, a little dizzy and possibly partially disorientated. whoops. well, i pushed on anyway, you will be pleased to here, and one would assume survived the adventure, hence me being able to write this and, indeed, you read it. unless the afterlife is just the same as the now life.

whilst you all recover from being disorientated and dizzy, you poor things, i did promise you all a good deal of moaning, groaning, whining and all that oh woe is me thing about my efforts to quit / cut down considerably on the smoking side of life. behold, then, to that end, the last cigarette from the last packet of Marlboro Bright Leaf that it seems i will purchase.

why is it the last? no, not last cigarette, but last packet? have i decided to stop buying cigarettes all together as part of my ambitions? in fairness that would be a brilliant step in attaining my ambitions, but nothing so intelligent or accurate at this stage. it just seems that now no one has these smart (cheap) Marlboro Bright Leaf in stock anymore. so i cannot purchase them.

yes, yes i should. i should increase the determination of my efforts to quit / cut down considerably smoking. i agree, especially as the splending elekronicky cigarety that the child of the condiment phoenix gave unto us is brilliant. i will try, dear reader, and do not stop having positive, encouraging supporting words and thoughts for me.

but enough of that, and more of the preview for the imminent train adventure. a preview that i suspect, if not quite fear, may be a longer post that the actual adventure itself. but there you go, never mind.i will do all i can to avoid further sub-plots and references to things not relevant to the train thing, but all i can shall have to be interpreted as not very much.

as i approached the most noble and notable station, i noticed a sign indicating that you, boy, were now in the North Yorkshire Moors, as in you stood upon the land  that is the finest and greatest this Earth has thus far offered up to us mere people. well worth a picture.

you are welcome to look at and admire the above picture for as long as you wish; i certainly encourage you to do so. blimey, it is so very good a feeling, even in a state of being ill and somewhat dizzy, to be back in the only place i have ever really thought of as home.

on to the train station itself, then. somewhat different from the ones of the days of the Gautrain. actually, very different indeed. except that it is a train station and something that one uses for the purposes of boarding or disembarking from a train.

you are not obliged, dear reader, to simply take my word in this respect. fear not, here is a picture for you to show the difference.

yes. there is just one train track. to this end, the part of my walk up to see which track exactly i needed to stand by to catch the train at was somewhat pointless. but never mind, look how beautiful and open it all is. in the Spring sun at the least; in the colder, wetter months of the year it may look a good deal more rustic that this..

i know which track it will be i am to stand beside and wait for a train, then, and i have a rough idea of how long it will take me to walk to this fine, fine station in ample time to board the train in order to carry out some business that i care not to mention here right now.

all should go reasonably well, then. so long as i get there in time for a particular train. if i do not, as in if i fail, it could be somewhat bad, but we will get to that just now.

in the mean time, my my, has it been four years already? blimey, what changes have come about around and all over in this period (presumably not measured for accuracy by google), in particular of course for your simple and somewhat humble narrator. and just how do i know it has been four years, or four years since what? well, look at what James has taken a shine to.

yes, they are World Cup 2014 stickers that one places in a sticker book. i can remember the great enthusiasm my Dad and Brother had, four years ago, for obtaining several thousand packets of stickers in an effort to fill the World Cup 2010 sticker book. we all then, of course, lived in the same country, that country being where that particular World Cup, to the delight of Spain, was held. as far as i am aware none of us presently do, or intend to, live in Brazil for this World Cup. nice though, of course, it would be.

James, thus far, has expressed no wish whatsoever to have several thousand packets of stickers all at once in an effort to fill his sticker book. he has a good deal more modest approach to it, really, happily opening 2 or 3 packets at a time and taking delight in what he has. thus far, flicking through his album, he has done really rather well in regards of the Ivory Coast squad. he has, for instance, Drogba, and some other players from there who are not Drogba.

returning, if you insist, to the ways of the train and a preview of the proposed adventure. why would it, you may ask, be so bad if i missed by means of time the one train i intend and propose to board at a point in the not too distant future? there is a clue for you, as it happens, on this picture.

yes, that's right, you spotted it. although obviously the picture is too small and too distant to make out the details, i believe you can see quite clearly that there is some 5 or 6 hours between each train. this is somewhat different from my experiences of the Gautrain, which ran every 20 minutes or so. the one train on the morning runs at a time that gets me to where i need to be with only a mater of minutes - ten or so - to spare before i need to be to that which i am going. if i miss it, or the train holds me in disdain and simply goes without me, i am super stuck. stuck, as point of fact, to a level which rhymes with me being ducked, lucked and sucked. so fingers crossed.

the efficiency and reliability of things here, however, should by some sort of providence see all go as well as it can. as in if it fails, then it was simply not and further never meant to be. but i do hope i get on the train, dear reader, for if i don't then this preview shall be all for a feature that never exists. assuming i remember to take pictures and that anyway.

me and my mate Bamber once wrote a rock opera, you know, about a couple of chaps that worked in a railway signal box type of thing. well, sort of worked. we had insights into the ways that, in the relaxed atmosphere of early 90s rail things, one could milk the system of being off ill rather nicely, if you were of a mind to do so.

now then. right. some of you who have known me for years and have either stumbled on this blog by accident or have followed all my adventures, and indeed others of you who know me entirely via this blog alone, might be wondering just how empty, hollow, shallow, pathetic and meaningless my life has become, or if you like remained. what new depths, you may wonder, have i fallen to, how very pointless and irrelevant have i become to the surface of the earth.

the answer to that, if you are wondering, is this much.

yes. i have taken the time and trouble, via the magic of second class post, to enter the competition (of sorts) that Viz runs for people who are so anorak and trainspotty in their life that they take the time to spot Jimmy Hill in their magazine and write to tell them that they have. as it happens, i spotted him in no less than two sections of the magazine and i jolly well wrote and told them this.

i also, in my letter, made a bit of a heartfelt plea, admitting that in entering the "contest" that i was accepting i no longer even had the imagination to pretend to even have a social life, and i was thus joining the ranks of the other assorted basket cases and socially inept by hoping that "winning" a pencil with "i spotted Jimmy Hill" written on it would in some way make my life better. although i did mention that i had a friend called Spiros and that he likes Viz too but he is not very good at spotting Jimmy Hill as he has no idea who Jimmy Hill is.

it isn't really a contest, as far as i know. one simply sends them an SAE with a letter giving a general indication confirming that they spotted Jimmy and they get the trophy pencil in return.

i suppose the pencil is a bit special as you cannot, as far as i know, buy them in the shops or anything like that. goodness, how did my life get into such a terrible state of this that i am discussing a pencil that the Viz give to people sad enough to write in to them for.

back to the train thing then, and as i had completed all that i could with the day today in respect of reconnaissance and research in advance of the train adventure proposed, i headed home. yes, i still felt dizzy in the head and dry in the mouth, but i still found the time and energy to take a picture of beauty for you.

perhaps it is the excitement, anticipation and inevitable prestige about possibly getting to own a pencil off of the Viz with Jimmy Hill on it that helped me discover the will and reason to live, i don't know. i would probably get even more excited if they did one with 8 Ace or Drunken Bakers on it.

lunch? sure, eating would certainly help in the predicament i had (i got some of that orange juice stuff at the first shop i found) and nothing seemed as appealing, or as cheap, as a pizza that seemed to be for some reason named after a bizarre spelling of a Led Zeppelin song.

i just took it as a given that Kasmiri was a clever way of spelling Kashmir, the song by Led Zeppelin, in such a way that people knew what it meant but legally they would not be obliged to obtain copyright permission from or pay royalties to Plant, Page and them other two. very wise.

and then i had, after the above, a nice handful of tablets and an attempt to lie down and feel better. but we know how that went; as it was mentioned at the start of this post. making a sort of circle thing for you here, or circular way to the end. something like that smart film Memento, then, but with less tattoos and less Australians. although i think Guy Pearce was actually born in England, maybe.

right, then, more train action in the form of where all of this leads to eventually. assuming, of course, i get on the train and all of that.

off to try and feel better once more, although, darn it, i do feel a bit better now.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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