When we went for breakfast this morning, we saw that the sun was shining at last. On the other hand, the staff told us that the winds had even increased in force and that it was difficult just walking in the street. When we went out and tried it for ourselves we found they were not exaggerating.
We had the choice of spending the morning in Blackpool or going to Preston to wait for the London train on which we had reserved seats. I said I would like to ride on a tram as this was my last chance this time around but when we turned towards the sea, I was hit in the face by such a cold gust of gale force wind that I thereupon gave up on the idea.
Instead we went to “Wilko’s” where I spent a tenner on a wheelie bag for my luggage. The one I have been using all this time has too short a handle and keeps hitting my feet as we walk. I finally became exasperated with it turning over and hooking my shoe off that I finally decided to replace it.
I choose a wheelie bag at Wilko’s with a suitably long handle, transferred my stuff to it and left the old bag, which was still in very good condition despite having clocked up quite a few miles, in a charity shop on the way to the station.
We reached Preston just before 11 am and had to decide whether to wait until this afternoon for the train with our reserved seats or try to find seats on the 11:01. We went for this option but all seats were either occupied or reserved from the next stop Wigan. Our good idea had turned out not so good after all.
We stood until the next stop, Warrington, and disembarked there. The question is whether we try the next and subsequent Euston trains or wait for “ours” in the hope of being able to reclaim our seats. If the trains are as crowded as the one we took, any solution is going to be difficult.
When the 12:22 arrived, we boarded at the very end of the train. That carriage was full but in the next carriage, two fold-down seats were available. This is the area reserved for wheelchairs but as there were no further stops before Euston, we were safe to use them.
The ticket inspector informed us that there were “loads of room” further down the train but we declined, being satisfied with what we had. We could put our bags under our seats (no small consideration aboard a Virgin train as these trains are known for the inadequacy of the baggage storage capacity) and had plenty of leg room.
Things had worked out well after all and we would be home 2 hours earlier than planned.
As we pull into Euston station, my familiar world envelopes me. We pass through the crowds to the bus stop and clamber aboard the 73 and soon we are home.
I enjoy our trips but I also enjoy returning home and plunging back into my habitual environment. I have the best of both worlds.