Poetic Fudge Shuffle

The journey started in a muddle. The train awaited us on Platform 2, but Central Belt Shuffler and fellow travellers were, as instructed by the display boards, on Platform 1. We obediently trudged along the platform, up, over and back down to Platform 2. Everyone took their time.

It was midway through the evening, and – despite having had an early evening scone – Central Belt Shuffler was hungry for dinner. The man opposite, and his family at the next table, brought out a bumper bag of fudge. It smelled good.

Sensing my hunger, my travelling companion checked his bag for an apple he thought might be there. No. But he asked if I could have some fudge.

Shared food leads to shared conversation. This was a family reunited from around the globe – Scotland, Canada, Australia – for a wedding. The man opposite teased me about my hunger, and gave me various flavours to try: chocolate, mint, lemon.

As we went our separate ways at Queen Street, he said, ‘If you’re ever in Sydney, look me up.’

‘How will I find you?’ I replied.

‘Just ask around,’ said his daughter. ‘Someone will know.’

The man got out his wallet and handed me a couple of business cards. ‘I’ve got a few different businesses.’ (Senior Manager, Senior Project Manager, Global Implementation.) ‘That’s me. Robert Burns. Call the mobile.’

Fudge from an émigré poet.

Dark and Stormy Shuffling

A winter’s night, dark and stormy. At the station, all trains are cancelled, due to high winds.

Scotrail has dug up coaches from somewhere – from their appearance, possibly the 1970s. They offer the only option back home, though, and so I board, along with the other Glasgow-bound passengers.

Once out on the motorway, the storm buffets us. Water has found its way between the layers of window-glass, and run to and fro by my head. More for comfort than hunger, I eat the snack I’d carried to work that morning. Emergency flapjack.

We arrive in Glasgow, but the out-of-town bus driver has to be guided to Queen Street by a passenger. He parks up, and we all get off, relieved to have made it back home.