It’s the wrong seat is what runs through my mind as the man next to me politely stands up so I can sit down. I’m supposed to be seated in 41 and the sign above clearly reads 40 so without a second glance “Hi, excuse me, could I sit there please, if you don’t mind.” “Yeah, sure.” He replies kindly but I wouldn’t be suprised if he was a bit pissed off. I would be, if I was finally comfortable for the journey, taking the first few bites out of my burger king meal and then some one who looks like they’re about to fall on the floor if I don’t give way to the seat next to me asks me to get up. I mean I wouldn’t show it either…Anyway just as he stood up I looked behind me to see the number 41 glaring me in the face. Crap I made the wrong person stand up.. Well never mind it’s only a train journey, I’ll be off soon anyway… It’s sad, sometimes the things you put most effort into result with the least satisfying output.
I’ll be travelling to Istanbul, Turkey for a week, so I thought to write a little daily travel journal type entry but as I’m sat here on the train on my way to Coventry, I’ve realised I’ve made a ton of painstakingly stupid mistakes before I’ve even set off on my real journey. I’ve been and idiot, reckless, and downright ignorant but I promise I’ve learnt from my mistakes….
08/05 – Two days before departure I realise that I haven’t booked my train tickets to the airport. I live in London and the airport I am departing from is Birmingham. Cities away. Despite having a reliable family there was no way anyone was going to see me off all the way in Birmingham and I knew this weeks before the departure date so all that was left was to book the tickets of my solo journey. With the excitement of finally moving back home and it being the busy exam season, naturally, I forgot. I didn’t book them straight away and when two days before departure came about, my brain finally decided to remind me. I pulled out the app but I was too late. I know I had previously seen trains departing early morning but none showed up on my search, which could only mean one thing, they were fully booked and I was doomed. Well that was my intial thought as it usually is in these kind of situations. Then I thought I could travel by coach. Nope. No coaches either. So my mind was starting to become a bit cloudy and I saw no way of getting myself to Birmingham airport from London by 8 in the morning, until obviously my mother stepped in. The plan was to take a train to Coventry where I reside during term time and then take a cab to the airport. Mother’s….
09/05 (today) – I was stupid enough to plan to help at a local community event from 13:00 to 16:00 on the day before my morning flight bearing in mind that I hadn’t even started packing yet. I thought I could do it and it only hit me at 23:00 at night that with my change of plans there was no time for me to be a good person if I wanted to catch my flight. Making my first wise choice in days, I called to cancel shamefully. I barely managed to pack everything in time for my brother to drop me off at the station for this very train I am sitting on, writing this. Ofcourse I didn’t take up the whole day packing, I used up most of it doing other important things. It was pretty hectic already when I got a text from an unknown number.
>side story< The trip to Turkey was organised as an optional "field trip" if you will for students on our course, so being the adventurer that I am, I decided to go ahead with people that I didn't usually talk to which was something I was comfortable with. It was a bold move considering I didn't have any of their contact numbers and they pretty much knew each other quite well since they decided to go as a group of friends… Anyway after finding out our itenerary for the week, I emailed a girl whom I was to share a room with and asked her to drop me a text so that we could maybe arrange to travel to the airport together and other such details like that, which brings me back to the main story…
So I recieved a text from my new friend at 17:45 half an hour before leaving time (if I wanted to catch my train on) time and all was well until she told me I needed a visa. What? No, I mean I’m not daft, I know visa’s are required to enter another country, but I was told British citizens did not need them as they were to be provided upon arrival. Well, my friend sent me into full adrenaline mode as I rushed to the computer to fill, complete and print out my e-visa that apparently I did in fact need regardless of me being a British citizen.
We rushed to the station, my brother ran a red light and with all the crazy thick traffic there was, I managed to make it to the platform by 19:01, 2 minutes before departure. The train was full. People walking back and forth looking for seats rushing to the toilets banging bags against other bags getting settled in and of all the carriages I chose to enter, I entered the busiest one. The closest one to the entrance of the platform and far away from the carriage my seat was reserved in.
When I finally reached my carriage I parked my annoying suitcase in it’s place and then walked to find my seat being knocked to and fro by the train’s turbulence. I say train’s turbulence because it certainly felt like that when I embarrasingly fell onto someone’s table, said sorry without even looking at them and just continued on until I found the wrong seat.
Day 0 – I have yet to look forward to the rest of this journey…