life starts at seven thirty

Up at seven thirty this morning. “What on earth is going on Tref” I hear you say. I know, I know. I’m off to see Wayne in Manchester. Got a stash of trefbash beermats for his office. After all it was his marketing person Jodie wot did the design. Seem fair.

The upshot of all this is I had to be ready to leave the hoose at eight forty five and had a few bits and bobs to sort in the kitchen before going. Breakfast for example. A more normal day sees me at my desk in the shed for eight thirty but that only involves a thirty second commute as opposed to more like three and a half hours.

Still, the journey between Sheffield and Manchester is very picturesque. Can’t say the same for Lincoln to Sheffield. Hey…

Sat writing this on the train whilst listening to my fave tunes on shuffle. The train manager (guard of old as opposed to old guard) has just been to check my ticket. Seems a bit pointless considering I already had to scan the barcode to get through the turnstile. I suppose people can bypass the turnstiles, somehow. Anyway I am legal. Legit. I have the appropriate ticket to ride. There’s a tune in there.

Currently at Saxilby. I have a table for four to myself at the moment but will see how it goes. Maybe if I look very antisocial nobody will want to come and sit here. Not sure I know how to do that though. Couple got on and are buying a ticket from the guard (neo train manager). Maybs there aren’t turnstiles at every stayshun.

The large dirty brown striped flatlands of Lincolnshire look very wet as we race on by. A fallen tree in a disused bit of spare land between the track and the fields. Large bales of straw. New recently planted greenery emerging. The whirling criss cross patterns of tractor tyres. Blurry hedgerows.

In Manchester for two nights. I quite like a trip to Manchester every now and again. I am wearing a raincoat, natch. With wollen beanie. YThey never used to be called beanies. It’s a bobble hat without the bobble. Why did bobbles go out of fashion? Did they go out of fashion?

Gainsbororough Lea Road. Famous for the Gainsborough Model Railway Society. There is no other reason to come to Gainsborough. The Ping Golf Course maybe. I am only passing through. Dingy looking caravan parks try to hide behind steel fences. Next up, council houses with a caravan parked on every other drive. We move on. Small pond surrounded by reeds and with a solitary paddling swan.

I have removed my Bose phones. Quite a hubbub in the carriage that I couldn’t hear when listening to music. Good headphones. A large power coalfired power station provides an industrial backdrop.

This journey is very boring. I am reminded once when THG and I went to Leeds on this same train. A hen party got on at some point. Boy were they loud. I was fortunate in having my Bose with me. Made a huge difference. Unfortunately Anne had to suffer until the journey’s end. Hooray for Bose. And yes of course I offered them to Anne, probs 😉

There is pub in Sheffield Station called The Sheffield Tap. Quite good. I have occasionally broken my journey there althoug none of the Sheffield lads seem to be availabe this Friday. Will do me no harm to stay clear. Likely to be a bit on the early side anyway. WIll be a Friday mind you. Well into the weekend.

Worksop has long back gardens behind terraced houses abbutting the railway line. Traffic wait at the crossing, barriers down. Empty sidings. Bits of track strewn all over the place. Actually an interesting station with lots of train machinery lying around. Waiting.


By Trefor Davies

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