Today was a perfect day to spend in the garden, digging, planting, weeding, etc and that is exactly what I did. But not before walking Mirinda to the station to catch the 9am to Waterloo.
Unusually, when we arrived at the station, there was a four carriage train at the platform. There were a number of people on the train as well as a gathering crowd on the platform, unsure about how to proceed. The indicators were not helpful; they said the train wouldn’t be stopping at Farnham.
The 9am train is generally a 444, made up of five carriages and it was probably this that made most people somewhat reticent about boarding. There were no announcements until the London train was almost due to arrive. We then discovered that there was a temporary fault with the signalling equipment at Farnham.
Fortunately, the signal box is after the station, which explained why there was a train in the platform facing towards London. I figured it was going to be the train. And then the unhelpful indicators changed to indicate that the train was the delayed 9:02 to Waterloo. This is interesting only because there isn’t a 9:02 to Waterloo. Still, Mirinda (and the rapidly increasing hordes) boarded and took her seat.
As I waited outside in order to wave goodbye, I realised there was no guard anywhere. I could see the driver standing by his door, telling passengers that it was, apparently going to London. I could see a number of station staff wandering back and forth. I could hear a chap talking on his phone and frequently yelling out “Michelle!” like a demented thing. But no guard.
The driver seemed a bit concerned as the time gradually changed to 9:05 and he said as much to one of the staff who took off for the little tea shed halfway down the platform. As he passed me, he told me the train was for London and I should board. I explained I was seeing my wife off and was wondering where the guard was. He laughed and said “Me too!”
Eventually this old chap (he looked about 80 and resembled one of the older dwarves in The Hobbit but without a beard) wandered nonchalantly out of the shed, tea still damp upon his lower lip, face cheerful and bright. The staff member who had been tasked with finding him smiled at him and said “You okay, Roj?” Roj responded with a smile and a wave as if there wasn’t a train full of passengers waiting to go to work.
Eventually Roj hit the button and the train pulled out, only 15 minutes late. A jolly start to the day.
Meanwhile in the garden…I planted up the bidens we bought on Saturday. They instantly made the hot border look less bare. This year we also decided to put some coleus amid them. The combination of yellow and rusty brown will look fantastic when they all grow. You can see the contrast in my blip, here.
Not satisfied with that, I then planted a couple of Alstroemerias (they look a bit like tiger lilies), a dahlia in the ex-nettle bed, a rosemary in the hedge bed and about a thousand snapdragons.
I was going to start weeding around the base of the standard rose but, as I settled down to lunch, an email popped up from Mirinda asking me to ring her about a job she had for me.
After lunch, I devoted most of the afternoon to trying to build her a database. I was sort of successful.