“Hault!” And the stain was gone

I am a serial floater and I am proud of it. I float on buses and trains, in cafes and without question, public toilets! Let me elaborate: I will never sit on a chair unless it has been scrutinised by myself for fear of making contact with an unidentified substance. Paranoid? Perhaps, but I have learnt from experience that an unfloated seat, may be a stain ridden nightmare.

Naturally, I keep a beady eye out for my fellow commuters in case my expertise should one day be required. Well, would you believe it, last week, this well honed skill was put to fantastic use. After a pleasing floating session, I made myself comfy for the commute home. With my iPod on shuffle I began mentally de-briefing myself after what had been a busy day. Suddenly, my super power shot into action; a suited man was about to take his seat opposite when I spied a red stained lolly stick.

“Hault,” I cried. (When I say “Hault” I actually mean, “Excuse me” but let’s go with it for dramatic purposes).

“Don’t sit down, there’s a stained lolly stick on the chair,” I said.

“Oh, thanks.” Stain man.

“You’re welcome,” I said with an air of gratifying achievement.

My work here is done.


Train Toilet Etiquette

We all know my thoughts on public toilets (see previous entry – May 19th) but for those of you brave enough to use them, may I suggest you develop some train toilet etiquette. I propose the following:

  1. Please refrain from unzipping until the automatic door is fully closed – however desperate you may be.
  2. Do not open the door until you are completely confident various aromas have dispersed enough to avoid causing a domino effect of hand-to-nose reactions from fellow passengers.
  3. Dry your hands properly! I’m now incredibly concerned that the drip which so elegantly landed on my shoe is turning into a stain.

Follow these simple rules and I guarantee everyone will have a more pleasant journey.


Incy, Wincy Spider.

I’m no aracnophobe, but I’d rather those little eight-legged creatures that co-habit the Earth with us didn’t crawl over my person. So, when I clocked a mini-beast travelling along my shirt sleeve this afternoon, I went all ‘Three Little Pigs’ and blew it away!

To my embarrassment and slight horror, it landed on the shoulder of the lady next to me. What to do? Exhaling rather ferociously was an option, but no one likes an ear puffer – we’ve all been there. Could I flick it off? Too invasive and personal space invaders are a bug-bear of mine. Shall I just leave it there, could I do such a thing? I’d feel guilty for days but the spider appears to be happy on this ladies shoulder. Yep, I’m convincing myself this is the right decision. Let it be.

“Excuse me, there’s a spider on your shoulder.” Fellow passenger informs said lady, glancing over at me in the process.

Ok, now I’m feeling guilty. Ground swallow me up now.

Like Pulling Teeth

I have never been more repulsed than on my journey to work this morning. We’ve all seen the nail clippers, the feet-on-seaters, but never, in all my years’ of commuting, have I witnessed such a mouth-dropping scene.

As I gazed out of the window, cursing the muggy temperature (I know, I know, I shouldn’t complain), I began to hear what sounded like a soft brushing noise. Dismissing it, I continued to stare at the familiar window scene while surreptitiously admiring my neighbour’s gorgeous manicure – think ripe peaches and cream – truly delicious. But the brushing noise was becoming increasingly vigorous and rather distracting. I tried in vein to locate its origin. I could sense the frustration in my fellow passengers, which made me more determined to investigate the root of this annoying sound. I now wish I hadn’t, as what I saw in the reflection of the window opposite, was truly disgusting. A middle-aged man sat carelessly BRUSHING HIS TEETH! Next time I feel the urge to come over all Sherlock, I think I’ll give it a miss.

It’s Good to Share

Question: I thought the mouth was designed for eating and containing food? Not the floor or other people’s possessions. Crumbs, I must be mistaken.

Answer: Next time I’m eating a pastry on a packed train I’ll be mindful to also feed my fellow passengers – regardless of whether they want feeding!

The Bees Need You

Have you ever given to charity as a result of reading one of those adverts plastered across the inside of every train carriage? I most definitely have and will no doubt continue to do so if a cause I’m unaware of grabs my attention. I take my hat off to those ‘clever bods’ in marketing who decided to use these often uninspiring voids to get people to donate.

Not sure my fellow commuter had quite the same opinion though, he appeared less than impressed by the latest ‘clever bods’ campaign.

“Bees. They want money for bees? They ask for anything these days.”

I personally love The Bees Need You campaign and it puts a smile on my face every time I see it. Not only is it refreshing and rather guilt-free, but far more important than we all realise. 

Help those little pollinators go! Give to the bees! 


Wish you were here…?

I am always intrigued by the interactions between an elderly, married couple. I love to imagine the wonderful experiences they have enjoyed; places they have been, moments only they can share.

This particular couple caught my eye while they methodically browsed a broadsheet holiday supplement. As they perused the glossy, image-juicy pages, my mind began to wander to sunnier climes: sandy beaches, blue skies, culture dripping from every picture-postcard moment. This daydream was rudely interrupted, however, by the conversation that followed – far from the romantic interlude I was expecting.

Mr Travel: “A tour of all the best temples in Asia, gastronomic high-lights from top chefs and a personal guide at your request. How delightful.”

Mrs Travel: “Oh look, speed-dating in Paris.”

What? Did I hear that correctly? She’s clearly on a different page and a different continent!