zzzzzzzzzz. Coming up for air in a week where most of my time seems to have been spent listening to "The train now arriving at Platform 4 is the ..." I've worked out that by the end of the week I'll have let the train take the strain on five days out of seven. All my trains seem to have arrived at once - or in the case of Monday evening were cancelled simultaneously as signalling problems brought the network to a juddering halt. (I arrived at Paddington at 5 pm - reached home at 8 pm!). Happiness is, however, standing in the wobbly concertinery bit between carriages with the other sardines when you remember you still have a Shapers chocolate bar and a smoothie in your bag, left over from lunch. Have rations, will travel! I sent up thanks that I don't have to manage this commute every day and spent (or tried to spend) the remainder of the time musing on the events of the day: snow, labyrinths and all. (First prize for initiative goes to the chap who visited the loo as we left Paddington and remained there almost the entire journey. At least he was guaranteed a seat.)
Then back down the line next day to Portsmouth - "land of seabirds and brisk, sea breezes." Bracingly brisk sea breezes I discovered. They'd not had much snow at all, but the wind, the wind...! I'm currently spending time with the gospel passage where Jesus calls Peter to walk to him on the water. What an ideal opportunity to really put myself into the account ; all I needed to do was stand there on the marina and let the wind and rain do their worst. I'm sure you'll not be the least bit surprised to learn that I chickened out. Self preservation and the prospect of warmth, comfort and a steaming hot cup of tea kicked in. Sometimes one can take this imaginative contemplation lark too far!
Today's journey back, well, not quite like the old Intercity Ad, but I was travelling at a quiet time of day and was able to sit back, doze, reflect and enjoy the magical landscape as the train sped through the snowy countryside.
A couple of shorter trips before the week ends with less likelihood of disruption. As long as I remember where I'm going. If you should see a lady of mature years standing, wild-eyed by an indicator board wondering whether she should be heading towards Basingstoke, Reading, Guildford or Paddington today, do say hello.