Pay it forward

I worked on Sunday, I needed to, to calm my anxiety brain and the million things it had to do.

After that there were groceries to get, Fridays trip had seen a fair few empty shelves. For some reason the supermarket is always busy on a Sunday, the aisles are packed with people and it can be difficult to navigate and side step the trollies.

On entering the shop I went in search of a basket, this was after all a bits and pieces shop and not a full one. There was only one left and both myself and an older lady made a beeline for it. She had this look on her face, both quizzical but also ready for a battle should the need arise. I reached the spot first, most likely because of my longer strides and of course the fact I needed a basket. I bent down, picked it up and handed it to her and said you use this one and I will go and find another. That wasn’t what she expected at all and the smile I received warmed my heart. I had no intention of taking the basket, my longer strides, even with a dodgy leg carried me on and I was able to find another one.

I like doing things like that, small little things that can change people’s perception in an instant.

Shopping done I headed to the next store, where only having two things to get I anticipated it would be a quick trip in and out, but it was busy there too. I approached the till and the lady in front of me clearly was doing her weekly shop, but thems the breaks, folks gotta eat. So I wanted in line for my turn, only for her to turn to me and say that as I only had a couple of things that I should go ahead. I asked her if she was sure and when she said yes, I thanked her and went about the business of buying.

You see that’s karma right there, the universe paying it forward and it made me feel good. It made me smile.

So do a simple thing every day, it might not mean much to you, but it could mean the world to someone else. Even something as simple as a smile.

The Joys of Modern Travel – Part 9

The title is a lie, an out and out dirty big fat lie I tell ye!! There were no joys about the modern travel this morning, not a single one.
Anyone who has read the previous TJOMT posts will know that in an effort to return to some kind of normality on the work front I have been attempting to travel on the earlier train. For the most part it’s not been too bad, however the stairs are slightly problematic meaning I have to do a kind of awkward hop limp on the flat surfaces to make the 3 minute window between train changes.
“Use the lift,” barked the station conductor one morning I was a little slow and felt I needed to explain myself. “I would but it’s full of your staff,” I barked back, at which point both of our heads did a cinematic slow turn to face the lift, which as I had stated was full to bursting with men in blue uniforms and orange jackets. I made a little “Hmphf,” noise and waltzed off, making sure as best I could that my indignation did not trip me up on the way.
This morning as my train pulled into the change station, I stood up to disembark. While standing at the doors waiting for them to open I could see the crowd surging forward, each one determined to be first to stake their claim on the steps and therefore secure the best seat. In light of the fact I can no longer do stairs, I am still at the stage of having to hold onto the hand rail and step forward on the bad leg. Such a simple task proved rather difficult this morning. It was like pushing my leg through a wall of marshmallow as bodies surged forward. Eventually in a rather loud voice laced with frustration I said “Could you all at least wait until I get off!” at which point a little corridor opened in the crowd and I was able to descend and pass through.
On my approach to the gate I realised something was not quite right as the guard was turning people around and making them head back towards the train, when in fact they should have been commencing the 3 minute sprint to the other platform.
Sure enough when I reached him the guard asked me where I was headed and then informed me I needed to get back onto the train as due to an earlier failure it was no longer an express and would be servicing all stops.
FFS!! I mean seriously FFS!!
So I about turned, retraced my steps and sheepishly stepped back onto the train, embarrassed at having to face the people I had not 2 minutes previously unleashed my frustration upon.
There were no seats, the one previously warmed by my ample backside now having been filled by someone else’s. The worst thing about having moved to a stage in leg injury recovery that no longer requires a crutch is that no one knows how badly you need to sit down.
I had to stand for the remainder of my journey.
It would appear that today was my day for receiving a resounding slap from karma.

The Joys of Modern Travel – Part 7 – Karma

Our Modern Day Trains!!
Our Modern Day Trains!!

Karma is a law in Hinduism which maintains that every act done, no matter how insignificant, will eventually return to the doer with equal impact

Ticket day today….so what would you like first, the good news, or the bad news!

There was no one at the station again, so I had my usual two options, jump off at a manned station, purchase ticket, jump back on and away we go or jump off at a manned station, take my time, have a cup of coffee, kick back and relax and wait for the next one. I opted for the former, after all I did have to get to work.

Ah FeckAfter my previous encounters with the guards at the station and on the train where they had apologised for not waiting, I felt assured that today there would be no repeat performance. I spoke to them on the way through and said I need to go and get my ticket and they nodded as there was a gentleman in front of me in a similar position. He went first and paid for his and as I stepped forward to the counter I heard the all to familiar noise of the doors closing and the train departing from the station. “Ah feck” says I, rolling my eyes and thinking not again.

So I was a little miffed to say the least but it’s not like I could run up the track screaming and waving my fists now is it, so best to concentrate on the task at hand.

“Is there any truth in the rumour we get an extra day on our tickets because of the strike last month?” I asked. Being miffed had made me a little braver than normal. “No, no truth in that rumour but if you give me a second or two I will tell you what you can get” was the reply and he proceeded to stab the shoite clean out of his wee calculator. “You get a £3.80 discount” he said looking a little ashamed. “Fair enough, I’m happy enough with that” I replied and watched the relief wash over his face. Anything is better than nothing.

So with my ticket bought, 30 minutes to kill and at a loss for something to do I did indeed purchase a cup of coffee and wandered out to the platform to kick back and relax.

WaitWhilst sipping my coffee and enjoying the sunshine I happened to notice that the train I had vacated not 15 minutes previously was sitting further up the line at the next station, which is not more than 3 minutes away from where I was. At this point I actually did consider running up the track, arms a flailing screaming WAIT!!!! at the top of my voice, but a sharp twinge from Alien Leg brought me sharply back to reality.

After another 5 minutes or so I began to realise something was wrong and that’s when the notion of karma hit me. The conductor didn’t wait so his train had broken down, was it really so bad that I had a little inward chuckle! After another 5 minutes it disappeared off into the distance, albeit at a very slow pace.

My next train pulled in and we started on our journey. Two stops along we picked up all the passengers from my original train.

It turns out there were 3 faults on the train when it left the first station. They called a mechanic to travel on board the train and proceeded with the journey, sadly not making it past the 7th station. Would it not just have been better to send out another train in the first place ffs.

No offence but your announcements of NIR apologises for the delay and inconvenience it may cause,  is, as my mate would say a bit like shouting toilet after you’ve shit yourself!