Thursday, 27 January 2011

The salon

Got an early train home today and found myself inside a mobile beauty parlour. There was a girl across the aisle giving herself a full manicure, complete with three coats of toxic fumes. I tried not to watch where the cuticle clippings and file dust went [shudder].

The girl opposite was extremely pretty, with a very natural and fresh look. She spent the next hour painting, lining and blending. Then she teased her previously sleek dark hair to twice its original volume. By the time she had finished, she just looked like an average girl that had to paint herself a pretty face. Wonder if her daddy knows she keeps about £100 of makeup hidden in her bag to put on when she leaves the house.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Maybe I drink too much coffee

I popped into the chain coffee place I often frequent on the way to the station*. The guy behind the counter greeted me with a warm smile and he chatted away for a couple of minutes. I was just thinking that I'd better order my drink so that I could get a move on when he handed me a steaming hot cup of life-sustaining liquid.

It was like the planets had aligned and all was right with the world. After that, the train was on time with four carriages. I'm sitting opposite the very entertaining prep school kids, and I can barely hear Management-speak Wanker blathering away behind me. Thanks, coffee guy!

*Apologies to my most favourite barista in the whole world. I feel like I'm cheating on you, but you're not open at 7am. Hell, sometimes you're not even open at 10.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Strange bedfellows

The poor man across the aisle from me has drawn an unfortunate lot this evening. Due to the- erm- rotund nature of the man beside him, he has been forced to overhang his binderful of legal documentation into the aisle in order to work. This leaves him open to constant collisions from the overly keen trolley guy who has clearly not met his daily quota of KitKat and lager sales.

It wouldn't have been so bad for him if Señor Rotundo had not been snoring at a decibel level that would require unionised workers to have been issued with protective equipment. Señor Rotundo is wearing a wedding ring. Either his wife is deaf or he sleeps on the sofa.

Working Guy caught my astonished stare and asked if I had a marking pen. Seemed a shame not to draw on Señor Rotundo's face, really. Alas, we were not properly equipped so Working Guy had to amuse himself by rolling cigarettes with his twitching fingers. Another example of a quiet evening spent devising ways of smothering the guy snoring away contendly next to you...

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Call for inventors

A week into resuming my regularly scheduled commute, and I have a cold. Again. This is at least 4 since New Year 2010. Since I'm not a sickly person and my family have escaped most of the bugs, I can only assume it can be blamed on the giant rolling germ capsules on rails where I spend so many hours.

Here's where the lovely, creative People of the Internet come in. Let's have a collective brainstorm for some sort of personal apparatus that wards off viruses while on planes or trains. I'm not interested in the face masks reminiscent of SARS in China. Either something discreet that others can't see, or perhaps something so freaking outlandish/stylish that it becomes as ubiquitous as the iPod.

Unfortunately, there's no money for R&D, but you'd have my undying gratitude and a far smaller quantity of snotty tissues in the bin.

Suggestions/drawings/whatever in comments or via email.

Friday, 14 January 2011

The late train

This post was going to be called, "The Last Train", but it seemed a bit ominous when I haven't reached home yet.

I spent the day in London and caught the last train back, which was delayed because of a broken train on the line. I was apprehensive about the journey, fully expecting it to be chock full of weirdos. Unfortunately, the most remarkable passengers were a mildly obnoxious band of Uni-age wannabe rockers sporting faux fur and glam rock haircuts. There have to be weirdos on the late train. It's practically a rule.

Oh no. That leaves only one thing.The weirdo must be me.

Thursday, 13 January 2011


Yesterday, despite having only two slightly overcrowded carriages, I enjoyed my commute. My husband had a meeting in the city where I work, so joined me for the train journeys. Having someone to chat with on a wet platform in the dark was really nice. For once, the person opposite me at the table playing footsie wasn't a complete stranger. It was a pleasant, unusually quiet journey.

At one point however, he did turn to me and say, "Earbud Avenger my arse. There's no noisy people on here". I'm not sure that he was convinced by my repeated assertions that it wasn't usually like this.

When we got back last night to the welcoming bustle of our home city, he reached for my hand and asked me if I always felt like kissing the ground when I got back.


Sunday, 2 January 2011

Back to regularly scheduled bitching soon

Know what I love most about the end of the year? No commuting. The hours that I am usually stuck somewhere cold and surrounded by coughing people are instead spent in my jammies with a cup of tea and sweet people. My normal commute and bitching will resume as normal later in the week. Earbud Avenger may appear in fleece undies this time!