Sunday, September 21, 2008

London August 2008: Leaving Maidstone, England for London

21SEP08 Maidstone, England

It was 6:00a when my friend’s alarm went off and he got up. Fifteen minutes later my alarm went off and I awoke fully and got ready. We left the flat at 7:00a sharp and headed for the station. The plan was to take the 7:11a train to London Bridge station.

It was rather chilly out and all of the streets were devoid of cars and people except us. A silent mist hung low over the nearby canal as we made our way to the station arriving at 7:08a

We bade our goodbyes, then I made my way onto the platform. I noticed that the sign was saying the next train was at 7:30a to Victoria and it was delayed until 7:38a, Odd, I thought. I found an agent and he said that the first train was at 7:30a and they were hourly in the morning to Victoria and that there was no 7:11a. I was a bit bothered as I knew that I printed the schedule for today and it indicated a 7:11a train arriving at 8:12a in London Bridge. Oh well.

I used the kiosk to purchase a single ticket into the city, noting that a return ticket just cost 10p more. What a deal. I also found a return ticket for the next stop in the machine so I gave it to the agent. In a few minutes I heard him make an announcement and a lady came forward and claimed it.

It was 7:37a when the train arrived and we all got on board. By now the platform was quite crowded for a Sunday I thought.

Although the train was a few minutes late, we only arrived in Victoria two minutes behind schedule at 8:34a. I made my way to the District and Circle lines as the Victoria line was still down. The plan was to still take the Piccadilly Line to the airport.

A District Line train soon arrived and I changed to stops down for the Piccadilly Line, just missing one as I arrived on the platform. The signs indicated the next one would be in 7 minutes. Right on schedule it showed up, except it said Rayners Lane as opposed to Heathrow 4 & 1,2,3 as the platform signed indicated. I still got on as I would get off at Acton Town and take the Terminal 4 bound train there. I just wanted to keep moving really.

It was quite annoying on the train as a couple came on the train and would not stop slobbering over each other. They must have kissed a dozen times.

At Acton Town, the wait was about three minutes and I was not alone. There were indeed several people on the train who were going to Heathrow. The kissing couple came off and continued their romance; I guess last night was not enough. Can someone get them their own platform?

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