Yesterday’s post was not so much about writing my book but conveying a true story of something that happened to me. I don’t think this is a bad thing, as it improves my storytelling skills and hopefully amuses. I recall these idiot moments fondly and they make me smile as I recall them. I look forward to coming back to these posts in the future and rereading. A lot of things in my book ‘unfriended’ were influenced by experiences, that said I must add that I’ve never joined the EDL, seen racist toilets or come out as gay just for a day, it’s the other things, honest.
I was going to recall the ‘2nd toilet’ story but then I remembered ‘the cough sweet’ incident as I’m currently sat on a train so I thought I would share that one first.
It was a cold winter morning, I was under the weather and commuting to Manchester where I worked. My throat was killing me, it was swollen and swallowing was difficult. It felt horrible. I felt rotten. I looked in the cupboard and noticed a box of throat lozenges. I smiled and popped them in my pocket. They made a rattling sound and I assumed they had all been broken up. I was sure they would still help as I felt I’d swallowed razor blades as my throat was so sore. I walked to the train. It was cold as I got on the train and I tried to keep warm as best I could. I pulled my coat tighter about me. I rubbed my sore throat and then remembered the throat lozenges and smiled.
I grabbed them out of my pocket and flipped open the little cardboard box lid and in one fluid motion dropped the lozenges straight onto my tongue. The instant they were in my mouth I realised something didn’t feel quite right. The box was still open in my hand. I looked down. I was staring at a box of drawing pins. I, fortunately, didn’t start to chew as I’d realised immediately. I spat them out into my hand. I cupped my hand and pushed them back into the box. I wonder to this day if anyone had looked up to see a man spitting out drawing pins on the train and for them to wonder if he had learning difficulties or he was just a bellend.
I still have the box of drawing pins in my office and to this day every time I see them it brings a smile to my face. The picture above is the actual box.
Travelling on trains in the north-west of England is such a frustrating experience. People in the south might also have their own challenges I don’t know. It’s 2 hours since I set off from Manchester. I’m still probably 20 minutes away from my next connection. To make it worse I drove to another station this morning, so the car even isn’t at home. I don’t know if there’s a connection yet. I considered collecting it in the morning, then realise I can’t there are no trains, there is a strike. There’s been an accident which can’t be helped, but they are so disorganized and don’t tell you anything. You just sit and wait. The train moves a few minutes, slowly, then stops and waits some more. I have with the time provided me from Northern Rail wrote two blog posts, listened to radio 2 BBC Friday night comedy. It’s been productive. The blitz spirit comes out when it’s gets like this I note. People talk to one another, everyone’s in the same boat. The train smells of wee which tops off a bad day. That said I should be gracious, I will make it home eventually the reason the train was delayed I believe might have been a fatality. That unfortunate person won’t be making it home, his or her family will be impacted by it. My journey hasn’t been that bad when I put it into perspective, I got to write longer than I would normally and will eventually get home safe.
I also managed to write a short story of 250 words with the words from yesterdays post but I will save that till tomorrow.
I got home 3 hours late in the end.
He looked up. She smiled. He had caught this train nearly every day for nearly eight years. He had never seen her before, there was something different about her, something he couldn’t put his finger on. She sat down opposite him. She wore a long red knitted dress. Did she make it herself he wondered? She noticed him looking over. He blushed. She wasn’t what people would call conventionally beautiful. However, he couldn’t stop looking, he wanted to describe her but the only word that came to mind was quirky. Which didn’t seem as flattering as it should for her. She was pale in an angelic way with piercing red lips that turned up at the corners as he took her in. Her eyes watched him, watching her. His commute wasn’t a long one and he worried it would finish quicker today that all the others. Was she travelling today as a one-off or would she be on the train again. He panicked, what if she wasn’t ever on the train again. The train stopped at the next station on his journey People got on, they moved between him and the girl and the connection was broken momentarily. Then it was back. Their eyes met. He smiled this time. She had the brightest blue eyes with dark lashes. For some reason, the face of his long-departed grandmother and her piercing eyes came to mind. He wanted to talk to Her. He wanted to know her name, who she was? would he see her on the train again? Where did she going to? There were so many questions. How did he start a conversation with her? She disappeared from view as someone came between them. “Tickets please” he showed his annoyance. The guard moved on. He looked up. She was gone.
(300 Words) Will be back to 250 tomorrow