Friday, December 23, 2011

Heading north from London


Dour old lady is about to step off a train at King's Lynne Station to go to her country cottage for christmas celebrations. I think most of England's trains that head north leaved from Kings Cross in London, so that is probably where she boarded. One doesn't like to show off, but we caught a train from Kings Cross and headed north too. Our accommodation was a little more modest than her country cottage though.

While she does have her own train, she prefers to save the expense and travel with the low life, still first class though of course. At her age, she really does need to mind the gap. Mind, the gap is nothing compared to the steps on a Melbourne tram. I understand why trams have steps, but I really don't understand why there are huge gaps between train carriages and platforms.


I like the cheers from the common folk as she departs King's Lynne Station.

17 comments:

  1. I believe the gap is to account for minor variations between trains, vibration of through-trains, settlement of the sleepers, etc. There are DDA requirements for how big the gaps can be (to +/- Xmm). Most of the time, when you're upgrading a platform with trains continuing through the upgrading works, there's just not enough space to bring it closer to where the trains could be.... though I think it was an Australian who invented the yellow rubber bits that sit on the edges of the train doors that close the gap and would easily fall off if the gap was too small.

    Merry Christmas Andrew. Looking forward to more posts in the new year.

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  2. I dunno....you take into account the different alcohol volumes between wine/gin/scotch/Pimms/Brandy/vodka/ouzo etc, and those gaps NEED to be advertised !@!!

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  3. I'm pretty sure the Old Lady's Christmas won't be any more fun that the ones we riff-raff have, no matter how big and fancy her cottage is.

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  4. How could anything possibly go wrong when you've got FAAAAAABULOUS pink doors on your very own train?!?!?!

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  5. Must say Tim, I am curious as to how you know so much about train gaps. Good wishes to you too. I always enjoy your posts, especially the army one.

    Jayne, just yesterday a drunken woman fell between a tube train and the platform. Luckily she survived.

    River, sorry. I would swap.

    Red, I did notice the pink theme. Her coat was pink in Melbourne, and the tram she travelled on with the red paint, has already started to fade to pink.

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  6. She is well camouflaged on the train. I wouldn't have looked twice. But why did she do it? Thanks to Tim for the explanation of the gap. We bought a T shirt on one of our visits that said "Mind the Gap"

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  7. Indeed she is Diane. The only thing that distinguishes her is the security. If she ditched them, she could really get away with just being another person on a train. In Victoria 'Mind the Gap' is painted on platforms, but not announced as it is in England.

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  8. I dislike the steps on trams. Mainly because it reminds me of my Nan and the fact that her heel caught inside her long coat whilst alighting at a hospital stop and she fell. Consequently loosing twins at full term. So sad. Then, I have nursed many a patient who has taken a tumble and fractured a bone here and there on account of missing a step, or, not minding that gap on platforms.
    I love the image of Her Royal Highness alighting. I wonder what was going through her mind at that point in time. Not washing clothes or dusting the mantle lol

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  9. Thank you Cazzie. Now Andrew, do you see why I'm terrified of trams and haven't been on one in 20 years?
    And after last night I'm thinking of sleeping on the floor.

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  10. Oh no Jah Teh, do not be scared, just mind your step dear :)
    Now, about this sleeping on the floor business... lol

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  11. Her Maj on a normal train quelle horreur!! Good heavens what are things coming to haha! I hope your Christmas is all you want it to be Andrew, take care and keep safe!!

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  12. I don't get why she was on a train. To show empathy with the commoners?

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  13. Cazzie, that is very sad. I think HRH was just so excited to be spending time in her favourite house. You can see by her expression how happy she is...well, maybe not.

    Jah Teh, well yes and no. Hundreds of thousands catch them every day, without mishap. From what I have heard around the traps, you often slept on floors when you were younger.

    Thanks PDP. I am avoiding the worst of it by working.

    No doubt Rubye. She has nice cars at her disposal. It may be quicker on the train, but why would she be in a hurry. The press must have been alerted as they were at the station. While there wasn't really a story about it here, it does play well back in England. People are often saying the English royals should be more like the Euro royals, that is more common and mix with the people. Perhaps this is a beginning, a pretty late one though.

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  14. Well, her children can be quite common, so why not Lizzie?
    Her frugality is legendary. It might be a combination of her parents' display of 'doing their bit' during WWII and looking the people in the eye, the decision that she should pay income tax, and parliamentary stinginess.
    [Was Sandringham the castle what got burneded?]

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  15. Good grief. Things really are austere over there, aren't they. I wonder if she has an Oyster card.

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  16. Heart not bleeding RJ. Well, she only used Met Card here, not Myki, so perhaps she only pays a cash fare.

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  17. FruitCake. It was Windsor that got burnt I think. I see no evidence of frugality. How much do her outfits cost?

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Whenever I wish I was young again, I am sobered by memories of algebra.