Wednesday, 30 March 2016
Today I live. Today I travel by National Express Coach.
I am on a coach.
A National Express coach to London.
Completely and purely because I have never done it before.
And completely and purely fed up with South West Trains Lording it over me with their monopoly.
I've gone into Internal Exile - like the people in Communist Russia faced with no choice had to do. I'll write a play on the bus like Vaclav Havel.
But it will be in English.
And probably be about being a British Dad.
The hardest thing with travelling by coach - there are many hard things - including the website that asks 3 times while booking whether you want to take out travel insurance.
Three times - including a pop up window.
To be honest, I love the sense of danger from the insurance pop-ups.
This is living life.
Something where even the company running the damn coach triple-checks if you want to be insured. AND, click, CLOSED. I'm going to live dangerously (3 times).
This is practically snowboarding.
Except it's coach boarding.
No, the hardest thing is being a novice. A national express know-nothing.
I can spend an hour on the website (and you need that to work it all out) - but for all my "reading" - I'm still a noob.
I did a practice dry-run and ended up talking to 3 lovely old ladies who explained it to me. One of them - who's been coaching for decades - was travelling to Hartlepool.
That means nothing if you don't know where I live, but I'm not comfortable yet plastering where I live on the web. Put it this way, this was 0830 and she was going to be home at 2100. I thought travelling by coach is yet another try to live like retired man.
But these are adventures - living in the present.
Anyway, they gave me the best advice for a nat-exp-noob.
Never ever pay your fare to the driver.
It's a really sure sign you're an amateur, really frowned upon and most drivers won't even accept it.
I waited for the coach to come, and asked the Driver how much the fare is to London.
Sure enough was really friendly, and apologetic, but I was a dumb beginner - Post Office or Phoneline - that's where the pros get their gear.
I was glad I could brush it off as a dry run that didn't count.
So here I am, knocking another chunk off The Bucket List.
My free guide to Understanding Your British Dad is here
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