Saturday, 31 March 2012

Notes from a trainride

I take a train 'up' to London every so often, for work, for play.
And though I've seen it dozens of times before, the landscape always looks beautiful to me. There's nothing particularly dramatic. No high cliffsides or turquoise sea, no mountains or villages of stark white houses. Someone in the paper today wrote about "bog standard rural England" and capped it by saying, "...and it's wonderful". That's what this is like.

The train is called The Evening Star. I can't think of a more beautiful name. I can't think why it was used, but that it was used adds some beauty to the stained carpet and the overfull wastebins. I agree with whoever took the photo above and said " a warm smile spread over my whole body when I saw the name of the train".

Yesterday, standing by the door and peeping out of the open window (my favourite way to travel), I saw:
A ginger cat sitting in a field of young wheat. At least I think it was wheat.
A raptor gliding low over another field and landing in a tree.
Clouds of starlings.
And beautiful spring blossoms: cherry trees and plum trees. The oaks haven't got their foliage back yet, but here and there are wisps of green starting to cloud everything.

The platform at Shenfield station was empty except for a couple kissing on a bench and the railway officer who whistled the train off.
I bought a coffee from the cafe bar and pulled the window up against the slight chill and watched Essex race by.

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