Tag Archives: train

1844. Boarding the train

Here I am quietly awaiting the arrival of my train and minding my own business. People keep getting too close to me. Don’t they understand that we have been asked to distance ourselves for several meters away from each person? Some people have no regard for public safety or the well-being of others. It’s typical of the modern society in which we live.

It’ll be the same when the train arrives. Everyone will push and shove, and the carriage will be like a can of sardines with as many people as possible stuffed into a confined space. I’ve a good mind to scream out “FIRE! FIRE!” That should set the people running in all directions and I would get the whole train carriage to myself. In fact, I will.

“FIRE! FIRE!”

“FIRE! FIRE!”

Everyone just looked at me like I was a nut case. It didn’t have the slightest effect.

And now I’ve missed my train.

1533: Inspiration

(The opening sentence for this story was suggested by Chris of chrisnelson61. If you want to join in the fun of suggesting a future opening sentence for these stories, click here for a peek as to what’s what.)

The opening line was always the most difficult to write. He’d written openings many times before, but this time it seemed doubly important. It was as if people’s lives depended on it. Certainly his life depended on it, especially his career. I suppose having a career is like having a life.

Strangely, he was in a train when the opening line struck him. He’d spent days on his opening line. He’d changed it dozens of times, rarely on paper but mainly in his head. Once the opening was decided upon, all else would follow. But he had writer’s block. What was he to do? And then WHAM! it came to him while on a train.

Abraham stepped forward.

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

1240. Train travel

Constantia wasn’t too sure about the latest craze. Trains had fairly recently come into frequent use. People could travel from one village to the next on a train. It was definitely going to be the cause of a new wave of immorality to sweep the country. Young men could take the train to a neighbouring village and no one would know them. They could get up to all sorts of hanky-panky if not chaperoned. The women of every village in England were no longer safe.

Then there was the threat of people travelling from another country. One does not like to imagine the havoc red-blooded Frenchmen would cause among devout English maidens. To say nothing of the Germans. And the Spanish. The Spanish! Oh my goodness!

As for those train carriages for long journeys that had sleeping facilities. Such heinous thoughts entered Constantia’s head as to what could possibly go on, that she could only shut her eyes tight and think of England.

This so called “Industrial Revolution” consuming the country was striking the death knell for an upright and godly society. The sooner trains for travel were banned the better.

984. Sunlight on a sign

984sunlight

Lydia was returning from an early morning shopping spree. To get back home she had to drive across a railway line. How lovely the sunshine of the morning! How bright the promise of the day!

As she neared the railway line, the sun caught on the sign that warned of the approaching rail crossing.

“Wouldn’t it be funny,” thought Lydia, “if this was a warning. Sunshine on the railway crossing sign almost blinding, and perhaps heralding (like a prophecy from above) that I am to be hit by a passing train! Oh the inevitability of fate! The railway sign is highlighted for a reason! I must be extra careful as I cross!”

The reflected sunlight streamed straight into her eyes. WHAM-BANG! Lydia went into the back of the car in front of her.

874. The train

874train

Blair had left school and was heading into town in search of a job. He caught the train. The passenger train wound along the coastline. The view was picturesque; the wild sea below the cliff crashed onto piles of jagged rocks. The sheer power of it all! And then…

The cliff face, along which the train snaked, suddenly slipped away. The entire train rolled down a hundred metres onto the rocks. All 113 passengers were killed. Except for Blair.

By some extraordinary sequence of events he was flung from the carriage onto a wave of moving earth. As if a surfer in the sea, but on moving cliff, he leaped off the wave of cliff face at the bottom without a scratch. He stood and stared. It had all happened so fast.

The police and emergency people began to arrive.

“Get out of the way, son,” said a policeman to Blair. “This is no time to be rubber-necking.”

“But I was on the train,” said Blair.

“Yeah, right,” said the policeman.

In the following days, Blair told his story. No one believed him. The press published photos of the disaster of course, and photos of Blair too – the liar who used the occasion of sorrow to get publicity. He couldn’t go anywhere without being recognised. Nor would anyone hire the liar. There was no work for Blair.

It was surreal. After a while Blair began to doubt his own veracity. Perhaps he had made it up. He knew he hadn’t, but somehow he felt he was living in Cloud Cuckoo Land.