Dry Run – Results

I mentioned in my last post that I’m due to start a new job in London on 27th which means commuting by train, or cattle truck, and as it happens I’ve spent the last two days on a course in London with an almost identical journey, which is a good dry run for what’s to come. So, how did it go?

Well, the first morning I was due to catch the 07:18 and decided I’d walk to the station, which I calculated meant leaving the house around 06:40. I was up at 05:15, did the usuals, had breakfast, and got myself dressed and ready, but by the time I went out of the front door it was already 06:50, so I was running about 10 minutes late. Not to worry, I thought, I’ll just walk at a brisk pace and I should be okay. So off I went. But 10 minutes later it was obvious that I would never make it, I was going to miss the train, so I had to phone my wife and ask her to collect me and get me to the station, bless her. Not a great start.

The train to London was busy but not initially full, so I had no trouble getting a seat, and it ran on time and without incident. The queue for the Cirle Line in the underground wasn’t as bad as I thought it might be, certainly not anywhere near as bad as it was when I went up to London for the interview (and two young women almost came to blows in front of me). The underground was pretty packed, but no problems, and I arrived at the venue for the course in plenty of time. Good result.

We got out of the course slightly earlier than expected. The underground was busy but fine, and I found that when I got to St Pancras the 17:42 was still in the station with about five minutes to spare. Marvellous, I would be home about 30 minutes earlier than I’d expected. The downside (there’s always a downside) is that the train was packed and there was standing room only for most of the journey. Bah, humbug. But at least I was home early.

The next morning I planned to take the car to the station rather than walking. Armed with a pocketful of change, I left the house about the same time as the previous day, which gave me plenty of time. The car park adjacent to the station was full, so I headed into the overflow car park and parked up okay. Unfortunately, the machine wouldn’t take any coins, so I walked to the car park the other side of the station, bought a ticket, and walked back again to put the ticket in the car. I was almost into the station afterwards when I realised I didn’t have my mobile on me. I was pretty sure it was still plugged in and charging at home, but I had to go back to the car and check, just in case I’d left it in there, where it would be visible. Nope. No phone. Okay, a day without the phone isn’t a disaster. It was actually quite a novelty.

After that things ran pretty much like clockwork. The 07:18 was on time and I had no trouble finding a seat, and the underground was busy but got me to the training course with time to spare. On the way home I got to the station before the 17:42 was in, and a lot of people were waiting for it by the time it arrived, but I managed to get on and find a seat without any hassle. My car was waiting for me when I got to Cantervbury and I was home in good time.

So, that was a pretty good dry run. Come a week on Monday I’ll be doing the same journey except that I’ll be getting off the underground one station earlier, but it’s shown me that I should have plenty of time to get the 07:18 and get into work in time for 09:00. By the time I get out of work I’m more likely to be getting the 18:42 rather than the 17:42, but I know what to expect.

Roll on 27th!

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