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.