If everything had gone to plan, today would have been the last of my daily commutes. However, the people I have been contracting for over the last nine weeks have asked me to stay a bit longer.
Whilst commuting during the last nine weeks I have seen many things that have either amused or irritated me. And I have written about some of them on previous posts (see Conducting A First Class Fare Dodge, I’m On The Train! and Zip-A-Dee-A-Texting-Spree!). So what has today’s journey revealed?
Well, call me sad, but I have been carrying out a little experiment on the morning journey. It was only an experiment to amuse me, and amuse me it did! I say, call me sad, but you can’t until you know what the experiment was.
After the first week or two of commuting, I had found the train time which best suited my working day and had settled into catching it. Obviously, when catching the same train everyday, you start to see the same people everyday. And they always stand at the same place on the platform and always sit in the same seat on the train.
They know where to stand on the platform so that the doors will be right in front of them when the train stops, and they know which doors they need to use to board the train so that they will be closest to the exit at their destination station.
And I have to admit to doing exactly the same! 😦
However, that wasn’t my experiment.
I noticed that I always appeared to be the first commuter to rise from their seat and make their way to the doors as the train approached the required destination. And as I rose, the rest of the commuters appeared to follow suit. Every morning, I, like the others would have my head buried in the morning newspaper. And, whenever I saw a particular landmark out of the corner of my eye, I would put away the paper and make my way to the door.
This went on day in, day out.
So this is what triggered my little experiment. From the day I noticed this, I put away my paper earlier and started to vary the point at which I would rise. I wanted to know whether anyone else was keeping an eye on the journey or whether they all relied on someone else ‘informing’ them that the destination was close.
And it didn’t matter how early or how late I rose, no one would move until I did!
Some days, I even ‘twitched’ as though about to rise, and the people about me all readied themselves for the off. Some even stood but didn’t move from their seats once they noticed I hadn’t gone anywhere. These people were like sheep – always having to follow the one in front.
One good thing about this was that I was always closest to the door when the train stopped, so I was also always first off and out of the station before the one hundred or so commuters behind me rushed to the two tiny ticket barriers, looking like the sheep they were, being herded into a pen ready for shearing!
And today, I was a bit naughty. I left it late; very late. So when they all realised we were almost in the station, there was a mild panic. Commuters everywhere hurriedly packing away their papers; their laptops or their novels. Reaching for their coats and bags and making a dash to the doors. Needless to say, I was still off first and well on my way before the majority of them were anywhere close to the barriers.
Oh what fun we have – all in a day’s commute! 😉