Friday, December 21, 2007

Happy Christmas

Best wishes to everyone. Thank you for reading my blog.

I must confess to just a little bit of recycling in respect of this post. The sentiments do however remain genuine.

There is apparently no chance of a White Christmas in my part of South East England, so I thought I would once again share with you my idea of how Christmas might appear in warmer climes.

I took this picture on Mt Kinabalu, Borneo, a couple of years ago. You may spot a little bit of post production. I like it, so I serve it up on a plate once again.

Do please have a very Happy Christmas and a peaceful and prosperous New Year.Happy Christmas. Based on a photograph taken from Mt Kinabalu, Borneo, November 2005. Click picture for more detail.

Liverpool Street Main Line Station - Christmas Closure

Liverpool Street (London) main line station will be totally closed from Sunday 23rd December 2007 through to Tuesday 1st jauary 2008, to allow engineering works to take place.

The One Railway website has full details of alternative arrangements here.

There is a clickable map of the One Railway network which is quite whizzy.

The Central Line will still be calling at Liverpool Street and, apparently, off-peak services on the Central Line will be increased to 30 trains per hour.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Change of Scenery

I had to go to Wrexham today for family stuff. It wasn't really practical to do the return journey by train, so 340 miles of driving later, and I am a tad tired!
View Larger Map

The icing on the cake was having to sit on the M40 this evening for over 1/2 an hour, with the engine off, while the emergency services dealt with a fire. I am glad I don't drive every day for a living.

I guess today must be a manic late night shopping/ party night in London as my local station car park is still half full. Usually by now there will only be one or two cars still there. I wonder how many will still be there in the morning? Edit: Answer = "Lots"

The trains were noticeably quieter than usual on Monday and Tuesday, so hopefully loads of room to spread out tomorrow!

A summary of Chiltern Railways' train services over the holiday period, including downloadable pdf files, is available here.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Train Shortage on the Central Line

I have just received a text message advising that there are minor delays on the Central Line due to a lack of available trains.

Is it just me, or is what work Metronet are/ were doing deteriorating? There seem to have been an increasing number of infrastructure breakdowns over the last few weeks.

Lack of trains on a frosty morning? Looks to me as though the trains feel like me today - cold and tired. Still, at least when it rains, I don't leak.

Tesco really are trying to change things too much

I have this morning received an email from Tesco.

The first sentence reads:

"With Christmas less than a week away, its time to think about all those last-minute buys."

Now, I know I am a bit slow at getting started with my Christmas shopping, but moving Christmas nearer is not going to win brownie points for anyone.

I have used a number of reference points and am fairly confident that Christmas Day is on 25th December. Today is 12th December.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Grotty mornings on the Underground

Monday morning wasn't a good start:

Unusually, my Chiltern Railways train got in to Marylebone ten minutes late. The Bakerloo Line was suspended due to a broken down train at Oxford Circus. I then walked to Baker Street but could not get to the Jubilee Line due to overcrowding. I then stood on a Metropolitan Line train which was terminated after ten minutes (without going anywhere). It then took six or seven minutes to even get off the platform due to the number of passengers, so I walked to Soho. I should have done that in the first place. Very wearing.

Thursday wasn't particularly good:

There was absolutely no way I could get on the first Southbound Bakerloo Line train that arrived. I waited ten minutes for the next one- I suspect crowd control must have been in place at Paddington, because when it came in I was able to get a seat. I was at the back of the train- things must have been really bad in the middle of the train, because passengers were stood several layers deep as we left the station. At Oxford Circus I changed to the Central Line for one stop- really bad move. I got on the seventh train that came. It would have been way quicker to walk.

I am usually the train geek at work. On these two days I did not initiate the water cooler conversations.

Day off tomorrow. Yippee!