Saturday, 3 January 2009

On the road

As we are heading East toward Heathrow on M4, after a wonderful New Year celebration in Hereford, I get a flashback. We turn into a rest area. I recognize it. There is no way I could have been there before. Or..?

Three years ago a friend of mine and I went to London together. She had never been there before, so we did all the tourist things and one day went on a trip to Stonehenge, Salisbury and Bath. On the way back (which was M4, only I didn't know and didn't care at that time) the traffic was horrible. The tea we had had in Bath reminded of itself urgenly. I went up to the driver and asked to be let out for a moment; at the pace we were moving I could easily catch up with the bus. The driver said he wasn't allowed to. If I got hit he would be to blame. I tried in many ways to persuade him, including the threat of ruining the seat of his bus. He wouldn't listen, and I went back. Soon, however, the driver announced through the loudspeaker that there was a rest area coming in a mile and, although it had not been planned, on public demand we would make a stop. The whole bus, who had watched my negotiations, burst into applause.

Two days later, my friend and I were going on another day trip. When the bus driver saw me, he exclaimed in horror: "Not you again!"

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