Today I went to Bristol in the morning to oversee the arrival of our worldly goods. These boxes had quite the journey – by train from Port Coquitlam to Montreal, boat to Liverpool, and then truck to Bristol.
And now all 36 boxes are settled nicely in our new living room. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to join them until Saturday, since our landlords still need to do a bit of work on the hardwood floors.
I took the train from Devon up to Bristol, and on the way back my intended train was delayed by almost an hour. These days, the train stations have fancy computerized voices that announce the trains in the station; a kind of modernized version of your answering machine saying “the time is now ..seven… thirty…… three” in that awkward, stilted fashion. So here was the computer relaying the following message about my train: “I’m sorry to inform you that the 12:44 service to Plymouth is delayed by 55 (five-five) minutes. I am extremely sorry about the delay to this service”.
I can’t say I felt a great deal of remorsefulness from this computer-generated message – at least HAL on 2001 showed a bit of electronic emotion. Perhaps, if the computer had worked a little harder, or maybe shown some more initiative, my train wouldn’t have been quite so late. Alas, this was not the case – it turns out the train was delayed due to animals on the track near Sheffield.