On the correct choice of reading matter for train journeys

Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by Charles Morgan, Mar 28, 2017.

  1. Charles Morgan

    Charles Morgan MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    8,155
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Car:
    Mercedes 250CE W114, Alpina B3 Cabrio, Alfa Romeo GT Coupe 3.2 V6
    So, off to Norwich to collect my Alfa. I found a first class ticket cost £6 more than cattle class and thought I'd catch up with my reading. My choice, a thick tome on heather, a plant type I hoped to plant in my garden as ground cover to replace the nettles. Lots of pics, plenty of info, ideal to fill the 100 minute journey and help me plan plantings. Except - page 4 - the little buggers hate clay so much they as much as die on sight. Shame my garden is entirely clay soil. Oh well, back to the small ads in Metro..,
     
  2. Mike Walker

    Mike Walker Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,572
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    North Kent
    Car:
    Mercedes W204 C220cdi Estate Ford Fiesta Mk 4
    Charles - No Kindle or iBooks app then? Methinks is time to get an update?
     
  3. MikeInWimbledon

    MikeInWimbledon Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,243
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2014
    Car:
    S500 (W221)
    Geranium spotting out the train window....

    [​IMG]


    Somehow dreaming of geraniums isn't quite the same.
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. OP
    OP
    Charles Morgan

    Charles Morgan MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    8,155
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Car:
    Mercedes 250CE W114, Alpina B3 Cabrio, Alfa Romeo GT Coupe 3.2 V6
    I feel when collecting classic cars (of the soon to be future classic if it doesn't blow up), old fashioned technology is appropriate (typed on my IPhone 4 which might be stretching it). I like proper books anyway.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Charles Morgan

    Charles Morgan MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    8,155
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Car:
    Mercedes 250CE W114, Alpina B3 Cabrio, Alfa Romeo GT Coupe 3.2 V6
    not seen many Geraniums but Constable country is pretty attractive. I think I've saved more than £6 in free coffee, fruit and snacks too. Nice comfy seats, a table, legroom and fewer oiks too.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    Charles Morgan

    Charles Morgan MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    8,155
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Car:
    Mercedes 250CE W114, Alpina B3 Cabrio, Alfa Romeo GT Coupe 3.2 V6
    My most surreal journey in First was a few years back. I was a in the Quiet Carriage, just across the corridor from someone typing peacibly at his laptop. The very gentle clicks were clearly annoying a chap in the seat behind who finally got up and asked in that strangulated aggressiveness of the 'do you know who I am type' for him to stop typing as this was the Quiet Carriage. The typist apologised but pointed to the picture of the banned mobile phone on the carriage window and said he needed to work. Mr Grumpy debated the point but returned to his seat. Clearly getting very agitated at not getting his way, he got up and proceeded to attempt to throttle the Typist. At this point I got up and bellowed using my considerable resonance at him - "Sit down you stupid little man or I shall call the Guard!" This did the trick, he apologised so profusely to the typist and I say there and glowered at him until he got off. I enjoyed that...
     
  7. davidjpowell

    davidjpowell Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    4,848
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Location:
    Doncaster
    Car:
    Range Rover Vogue, Volvo XC60 and crappy Pug 307
    My most bizarre was about 15 years ago (crikey). A late evening train back north and one of the other passengers was a young woman who was clearly the worse for wear, and had been talking (not very quietly) on the phone saying her purse had been stolen...

    She arrived on my knee at one point when the train wobbled as she wobbled past. Being a generous and thoughtful northerner, as I was heading to the bar, and as we had met, I offered to get her a drink also (water I hasten to add).

    Later in the journey she asked where I was getting off and looked most disappointed when I told her Doncaster - the stop before her. It all became clear, as she wanted me to wake her up at York...

    As I left the train she was sound asleep. I'm not completely convinced that she did not end up in Newcastle...
     
  8. MikeInWimbledon

    MikeInWimbledon Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,243
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2014
    Car:
    S500 (W221)
    Glories of off-peak travel

    Cost Centres One and Two are at distant universities and revel in taking First class off-peak for an extra fiver or so, listing the different free breakfast and lunch options, and warning that one should never travel mid-afternoon. (Poor snacks, apparently).

    Whereas Revenue Centre One swears like a trooper when she has to pay several hundred pounds to sit on a crowded train to visit the Northern Powerhouse for a peak-time meeting.
     
  9. Chrishazle

    Chrishazle Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,383
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2008
    Location:
    Nr Ashford, Kent
    Car:
    2008 S204 C220CDI Elegance Estate Auto, 1993 Porsche 968 Tip Cab.
    Returning to part of original post, not sure they're correct about heathers hating clay, the garden at our old house was heavy clay and we had a wonderful heather bank about 150ft long and 10 ft wide!
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. brucemillar

    brucemillar MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    7,587
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Location:
    Next Door to Alice - 25 'kin years now
    Car:
    C55 AMG Wagon - W124 300te 4matic Wagon - BMW 4.8is X5 E53 - SWB Pajero 3.5 V6 24v

    I sat next to very pretty young lady from Victoria to Rainham (Kent) on the last train home. She fell asleep with her pretty drunk head on my shoulder....Ahhhh, bless. What could go wrong?

    Well she wet herself..... I realised this, when my nice Armani suit started to absorb her output at an alarming rate of knots. So concerned was I (what a gent) for her well-being, I got her into a cab with me at Rainham, depositing her at her home. At this point Mum appeared at the front door to berate me for getting her daughter into such a state.

    Explaining to wife how I came to be soaked in somebody else's wee was not so easy.
     
  11. Giantvanman

    Giantvanman Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    3,809
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2013
    Location:
    Essex
    Car:
    FFRR 4.4 TDV8 Autobiography
    Hopefully the scenery will be sufficiently engaging for the relatively short trip.

    A short internet search provided two options-
    "winter flowering heathers of the Erica carnea type aren't fussy about soil type and come in many colours. E. darleyensis is also lime tolerant. E. cinerea and E. vagans are both lime intolerant"

    and although heavy work even with a rotovator, there is no reason why you couldn't mix in suitable materials to the top layer of the soil to break the clay down.....
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. OP
    OP
    Charles Morgan

    Charles Morgan MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    8,155
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2010
    Car:
    Mercedes 250CE W114, Alpina B3 Cabrio, Alfa Romeo GT Coupe 3.2 V6
    The book, which seemed rather definitive, recommended digging out clay soil to at least six inches, and adding back in the same amount each of sharp sand and humus. As I am trying to fill some 200 sq ft, in and around existing shrubs I will pass on that as the work involved far exceeds my threshold of idleness.
     
  13. bolide

    bolide Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    3,726
    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2005
    Location:
    Brighton
    Car:
    BMW E39 525 Diesel Touring
    Just dip into Donald Trump's Big Book of Excuses

    Nick Froome
     
  14. brucemillar

    brucemillar MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    7,587
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Location:
    Next Door to Alice - 25 'kin years now
    Car:
    C55 AMG Wagon - W124 300te 4matic Wagon - BMW 4.8is X5 E53 - SWB Pajero 3.5 V6 24v
    You mean use some "alternate facts"?
     
  15. Steveml63

    Steveml63 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    619
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2015
    Location:
    Sunny Abu Dhabi
    Car:
    ML63 AMG
    Hi,
    Many years ago I had a job interview in Newcastle and decided to travel from my home town of Guildford by train, 1st class.
    Guildford and Woking are famous commuter towns with many residents working in London.
    I waited patiently in Guildford station for the train to arrive - having asked where to stand for the 1st class carriages, when the train stopped.
    The train arrived and I opened the door to enter the first class carriage. Being a few years ago, it was one of those trains with corridor on one side and small compartments with 6 or 8 seats.
    The compartment I got into had one spare seat, the rest all occupied with city gents reading full sized serious newspapers. The look of horror on their faces when I sat down was a picture - they all were appalled to see me there and I did not understand why.
    The train set off and 10-15 minutes later the train stopped at Woking station. The compartment door opened and a smartly dressed city gent got on and then looked horrified to see that I was obviously occupying "his usual seat".
    I repeated the exact same thing a week later when I went for a 2nd interview!
    Cheers
    Steve
     
  16. HB

    HB Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,609
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Car:
    E63 5.5TT, E350 CDI, C320 CDI, S3
    I find Forum a good read on the train but sometimes, it's very hard.
     
  17. gr1nch

    gr1nch Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    675
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    Location:
    Louth, Lincolnshire
    Car:
    W222 S350d AMG Line Premium Plus 2017 Iridium Silver over Black Nappa
    Warning to the theme of meeting young women in trains - and this one was called Heather!

    .... as a late teen myself going home south of London on the train I meet your very nice, blonde American girl on her way home via Gatwick. After a bit of chit chat it turned out she was flying in the morning and asked me for advice on where to stay. Hospitably, as I was representing England, I offered her my brother's bedroom as he was away. Well we got to my home in Lewes and when my mum came home she was a little surprised to find this Californian bombshell in tow, but nothing compared to my girlfriend (when she came round in the morning) and me when Heather waltzed downstairs barefoot in the tiniest, 70s satin shorts and half a t-shirt advice her bare tummy. She had an incredibly well tanned and toned body..... Guess my mouth was well and truly hanging open when my girlfriend elbowed me in the ribs!

    Back to the heather and books, I'd recommend some on the phone too (great free classics from Gutenburg). Useful when you need a break from the forii and flora .

    OP, I like heather too. Is it not possible to mix something (eg sand) in your soil where you need it, to make it suitable?



    Sent from my XT1032 using Tapatalk
     
  18. artyman

    artyman Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,773
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Location:
    Hampshire
    Car:
    C 200 CDI Sport
    If you want some fiction to read you could always try the Southern Timetable :D
     
  19. brucemillar

    brucemillar MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    7,587
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2010
    Location:
    Next Door to Alice - 25 'kin years now
    Car:
    C55 AMG Wagon - W124 300te 4matic Wagon - BMW 4.8is X5 E53 - SWB Pajero 3.5 V6 24v
    Regular train commuters (I am one) have a unnervingly accurate mental map of every millimeter of the train platform.

    This enables them to stand on "their" spot on the platform, so that when "their" train arrives at the "their" platform, "their" spot is perfectly aligned with the waiting carriage door. Thus requiring no adjustment from side to side to ones forward movement, as you step onto "your" carriage of choice, before heading to your seat.

    All sorts of dodges and distractions are employed, should somebody unwittingly, stand in your spot. Normally a firm stare will signal the other traveler of their error. If the stare fails? Fellow travelers will often group around the stray, before, as one, moving almost imperceptibly a few inches along the platform, forcing the interloper to their 'novice' spot. As they mature, they start to learn their place, and these unfortunate scenes are committed to memory. Eventually, through age or redundancy, they become part of the accepted heard and are allowed their own, standing spot, on the platform. The cycle continues.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2017
  20. zipdip

    zipdip Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,548
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2015
    Location:
    Essex
    Car:
    s320
    Some time ago I picked up at a boot sale a pocket edition of "Far from the Maddening Crowd" these were produced in the 20's and 30's so they could be slipped into a coat pocket to read on the steam train journeys,alas I have not used it yet as my days of train travel between London and Dundee are over,but one day I will Charles use it,maybe make a special trip of it maybe Settle to Carlisle on a steam train.
    I hope you enjoy your new Alfa,that mark more than most has raised it's quality,gone are the days of owning a Alfa meant that you knew all the AA patrolmen on a first name basis.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.