The story of how a standard class journey cost more than first class
January 21, 2012, 2:44 pm
Filed under: Comment and column style

I wrote about my first experience of first class on my way to Devon, and now I am on the train on the way back, in standard class.

And do you know what?  It’s really not that much different.  OK, so I haven’t got an endless supply of tea and coffee, nor is my chair made of leather, but nevertheless I feel OK.  I don’t have a middle aged man peering over my shoulder so I don’t need to worry about skipping the sex scenes in any film I’m watching, and I don’t have a reserved seat so I don’t feel too self conscious of the massive headphones I happen to be sporting.  I’m alone so there’s no one there for me to worry about the ‘bye’ thing.

The frustrating thing is: I’ve actually spent more on this journey than the other, and here’s the story how.

Firstly, when I ‘cunningly’ planned this journey in advance to get the best deal, I was unsure whether I would go to Canterbury for a friend’s birthday or to Brighton for an exam on Monday.  So I bought a ticket to both as they were pretty reasonable.  However, I realised a few days ago that that meant I had booked two tickets on the same train to London so therefore paid twice – how silly.

The terms and conditions are that you get on that specified train so it was important to catch it at the right time.  I’d already learnt to be on time from the first journey, when I counted myself lucky that the train was delayed.

It was important to leave early but following a night drinking too much wine, my bowels decided to delay me so we were late into the car.  (Friends will know the wonder that is my digestive system.)  I also got the time wrong by ten minutes so we were running late.  Then, in true Devon style we were stuck behind a few tractors on some winding country roads.

I missed the train by about four minutes.  And of course my tickets are non-refundable so I had to buy a new one.

Oh, did I mention that the next train was an hour later?

At least that meant that there was no way I could possibly miss it.

I’ve been cheering myself up by listening to the sunscreen song – when I was about 14 I blu-tacked the full lyrics onto my teen bedroom wall.  It is actually full of really good advice.  Unfortunately nothing on trains but still.


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