Monday morning are usually quite bad for me. I think it’s the mix of starting the week again, remembering that I am not doing quite what I want to be doing and having to be on hot, sweaty and packed train. Not to mention that it usually starts by me running for the bus, train or tube

Then I get to the station and after dodging many people to get through the barriers and make it to the tube platform, I am greeted with a: ‘good morning, have a good day, keep it real, keep it good and enjoy your week. Driver, run the train’

I smile and sometimes when he is even more creative with his greeting, I laugh. And I see it all around me. On the tube, it is unlikely that people will make eye contact but when we hear it, we all exchange glances and smile at one another. It’s like his words are magic dust which takes people out of their own world and brings them into the world they share with others.

But it’s not always a good effect

On the train the other day, I think the driver or the conductor (I am not sure who made the announcement) was bored. He was speaking a lot and I was half listening as I was trying to read. Then because I was distracted by his over long speech, I caught what he was saying about first class carriages.

He was saying that we shouldn’t go into first class if we don’t have a ticket – OK. That if we don’t know if we’re in first class we should look on the windows and chairs – OK.  That we wouldn’t believe the amount of people that claim they do not realise – BIT MUCH. And that if you haven’t got a first class ticket then you shouldn’t sit there because you’re second class – OFFENDED.

I don’t think I thought of myself as a second class citizen on the train. Yeah I’m not a great fan of first class and yeah I know what that means but no, I don’t need someone telling me that, it’s just rude.

And sometimes they are strange…

The train got to the platform and the driver couldn’t open the doors for some reason.  Everyone was up and ready to go and having ran for the train, I have to say that I was anxious to get off.   

The driver made an announcement for the conductor to contact him and we hear nothing for a few minutes until the conductor comes and says that the driver cannot open the doors.  The driver then comes on and says that it is due to a fault. So it went from a problem with the driver to a problem with the doors, in less than a few moments.

I still now don’t know why the conductor tried to expose the driver. And it made me wonder if there was some kind of problem between them.   Or if I had just misinterpreted what was said.  Either way it made me think.   

And sometimes they are funny…

I think the best announcement, which made me laugh for a long time, happened when I was at school.  Back when they used to have chocolate machines on the tube platforms.   

The platform was pretty dead apart from us and a man who was putting his money into the machine.   All of a sudden the announcer comes on and says: ‘the chocolate machine on that platform is not working’.  He repeats this until the man stops putting the money into the machine and my friend and I burst into laughter.    I think the man was embarrassed and had we been  a bit older, we probably would have held back until he left, but we weren’t, so we didn’t.    

In the future

All these things remind me that even though I may moan about public transport, it is all those who assist and run the services, that make it what it is. 

Maybe one day everything will be run by robots.  It will be most likely that travelling will be more efficient.  But it would be a major loss, as they just wouldn’t have that human touch which can brighten your day. 

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