Needs Some Extra Train-ing

Right | July 25, 2017

(Most people drive to [Town where I work], since it is very rural and public transport links aren’t brilliant, however, the mainline train runs along a scenic coastal track which many people treat as a tourist excursion in its own right.)

Customer: “I want to go on the train.”

Me: “You mean the mainline diesel haul just outside or [Heritage Steam Miniature Railway in Nearby Town]?”

Customer: “The mainline. I want to go to [Another Popular Destination nearby].”

Me: “Okay. The trains run two-hourly. The good news is that the next one for the way you’re headed is only ten minutes away!”

Customer: “Great, so how do I get on it?”

Me: “Well, you can buy tickets from us, or on the train — they’re the same price, whichever. As I just mentioned, the next one’s here in ten minutes, just on Platform One out here.”

Customer: “Yes, but how do I GET ON the train?”

Me: *points through the transparent glass doors towards the ‘Platform One’ sign* “Just on this platform. Quite literally all you need to do is walk out the doors you just came in, but turn right for the platform instead of left for the street.”

Customer: “Yes, I see the platform. How do I physically get onto the train?”

Me: *now wondering if she has an unseen disability* “Well, I can ask Control to page the guard if you need assistance but since the train is imminent it might be better just to stand by the signal box, as the guard will need to go there to lower the level crossing anyway. There’s seats near toilets, and a ramp if you need one.”

Customer: “I don’t NEED a ramp. I NEED to know HOW to get ON the train.”

Me: “Have you never been on a train?”

Customer: “Never.”

Me: “Right, sorry for my misunderstanding. The train driver will stop the train at the platform and open the carriage doors. When the people disembarking have left, you may board the train by stepping from the platform to the carriage. There’s plenty of other people out there, so just copy them.”

Customer: “Thanks, I’m not stupid, you know.”

Me: “I never said you were, madam. I hope you have a lovely day out in [Nearby Town].”

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