On Tour

One of the things that annoy train-riding commuter persons is “tourists”.

I don’t mean, in this context, people on holiday going to look at the sights, although most of them fit the definition. I mean – for example –

  • People who stand around in the middle of the station concourse blocking the place for people who know where they’re going. I know that if they don’t ride the train every day, they don’t know which platform their train goes from – but they could keep out of the way while they find out
  • People who get on packed commuter trains just as they’re about to depart, with huge suitcases, then block the aisle while they bitch and moan that there’s nowhere to sit.
  • People who stand at the back of the group waiting for the train to come in – then when the train arrives, push and elbow their way to the front to be first on. If you want to be at the front of the queue, it’s quite simple – get to the station earlier. This may not seem like exclusively tourist behaviour, but it’s noticeable that none of the regulars ever do it.
  • People who sit in the clearly-marked Quiet Coach – where mobiles and MP3 players etc are supposed to be not allowed – and waffle into their mobile at high volume. And get ratty with the Guard – sorry, Train Manager – when he tells them to stop.
  • And worse, people who get in the Quiet Coach and let their small child scream all the journey. I know that screaming is just what some kids do – so don’t take them in the quiet coach

Sometimes people who obviously aren’t tourists exhibit tourist behaviour, and the ones that REALLY get my goat are the ones who are so important, they have to answer that phone call or text RIGHT NOW. There was one trhe other day, head down charging along the concourse, obviously knew exactly where he was going, with me in his wake. His phone rang and he stopped dead, immediately, to answer it. I managed to dodge round him, but I accidentally gave him a rather satisfying thwack with my rucksack on the way past :-)

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