Wednesday 7 November 2012

We are not entitled to a through train in life!

When were you last on a train? Perhaps you are a frequent traveller... if that is the case, you will be aware of how little control you have of your journey time and in some cases even your destination. I travelled by train from Aviemore to Largs on Sunday last, and found out that I am not really entitled to a through train! which got me reflecting on my life's journey... and as I work with metaphors, querying why I expect to have a "through train" in my life! You know the train (life) that takes you from the starting point to the destination with no hiccups, derailments, leaves on the line and leaves on time with no changes in platforms or stations!

My journey started in Aviemore at 10.00am and finished in Largs at 5.30pm. A journey of 7 and a half hours that took less that 4 hours by car the previous day. As I pondered the various interruptions in travel and the many inconveniences of delays and changes in stations, I embarked on changing my state which was escalating into impatience, into a more benign feeling of acceptance. A feeling of "It is what it is!" After all I had a great book to keep me company and many travelling companions to study and there was no getting away from the fact that I had no personal control of the train or train times ... the only aspect of my life that was open to my control was my attitude.
So 10.00am left hotel, feeling - anticipation, first long train journey in a while.
11.20am train left Aviemore, feeling - cramped, no seat available on own!
1.00pm change trains at Perth, feeling - apprehensive, unfamiliar territory.
1.45 embark on delayed arrival of train in Perth, feeling - grateful, but surrounded by disappointed travellers
3.30 arrive in Queen St Station, Glasgow, feeling - happy, nearly home
bus to Central Station, Glasgow...
3.40 only just caught the train to Largs... but no through train, so we change at Paisley and then after a one and a half hour bus journey later, arrive at Kilwinning, to await a train home to Largs.
feeling - delighted! and inspired as this day has shown me ... as my strap line says "Life's a journey - enjoy!"
Has this experience put me off travelling by train. Certainly not. In fact far from it. I am really looking forward to what experiences show up when I travel on the Orient Express.