April 24th, 2008

black king

What a week, so far...

Well, as I wrote earlier, I was joined at Toastmasters on Tuesday by
John, a Distinguished Toastmaster from NZ, who also expressed interest
in coming along to Thursday's Division contests. So that's where we've
just been, along with his wife Pat. But what a day it's been!
It started well enough, with a walk down to Wembley Park station while
I talked to Viv on the phone. And all was well till my train, all the
other Metropolitan Line trains and all the Hammersmith and City Line
trains chucked us off at Baker Street. After an unsuccessful bus
journey, it was off to the taxi rank, for I had a number of meetings
to get to this morning. As it turned out, it was possible to do all
that I needed to do and to get to the lunchtime talk at St Helen's
too. That was a very intetesting talk, punctuated by a hailstorm and a
couple of spectacular thunderclaps too.
Walked back to the bank with Nick, a very interesting and well connected man.
Then tonight, the Division contests. I still get horribly lost in the
Docklands: nothing there but big banks and big Versicherung houses.
But I was there in time for a glass of wine before the contests, and
also to catch up with some of my club members and with John and Pat.
We were privileged to hear five, no six, excellent speeches this
evening as well as five evaluations. The speaker from my club spoke
well, but was unplaced. The evaluator who came to our club this week,
on the other hand, won and so will be representing London in the
District convention in Killarney next month.
But now, it's goodbye to Toastmasters for the night and hello to the
lengthy journey north on the Jubilee Line. And if I'm lucky, maybe a
bite to eat when I get back to Wembley. Of course, if I keep typing,
the journey won't seem nearly so long.
I know I feel frustrated by writing what seem like decent lengths of
LJ posting on a phone and then noticing how short they actually appear
on a full size screen. I can type faster, but possibly not very much
more accurately, when I'm using a real screen and keyboard. The next
station is St John's Wood. It's one of those places where I have never
got out of the train. Most of the time, my train passes through it
without ackowledging its existence, though maybe that isn't quite
fair. In any case, I should imagine it won't be too long now. Swiss
Change of direction to posting: maybe I won't get a hamburger after
all, largely because I pulled the emergency handle at Swiss Cottage.
On the other hand, it was to stop the train leaving while an older
lady who had fallen off the train and smacked her head was still lying
against it. Fortunately she had another passenger with her (daughter?)
and it was clear she wasn't going to be abandonned, though in her
dazed state, she wasn't sure. I hope that TfL do make sure she gets an
ambulance, as she was clearly concussed, with a grazed and bleeding
head. Thank goodness remote stations like Swiss Cottage have trained
staff available for the occasions when things happen.
Tomorrow is another day. In New Zealand, and indeed Australia, the
dawn services for ANZAC Day will already be over. My thoughts are with
But tomorrow, all being well, lunch with Chris and Meg as they stop
over on their trip from Teesside to New York. Goodnight! This is
Wembley Park, where this train terminates due to late running.
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