Sunday, 13 December 2015

Train in vain

My quest to improve my 5k time was thwarted this past week.

Training went well:

Mon.: swim 1600m
Tues.: run 1 mile warm-up, then 4 x 1000m on track
Weds.: run 5.6 miles (town loop)
Thurs.: run 5 miles (hill intervals with club)
Fri.: no running
Sat.: no running
Sun.: run 6.1 miles in woods


On Friday, I was at a meeting out of town, and my plan was to take the overnight train back to Scotland in the morning. I'd arrive in Edinburgh at 7:30 A.M., be home at 8, and then make my way home for the Parkrun 5k at 9:30.

The train left London on time, and I settled in to my small berth. It was not much more than a bunk and a shelf, but I had it to myself. There was some stopping and starting during the night, but for the most part I slept. I could hear the rain and wind lashing the train as we made our way north.

I woke fully at 6, and left my berth to get a coffee.

I ran into the host for our carriage, and she informed me that there had been problems in the night. A train had broken down in front of us, and we had switch lines. We were now going to Glasgow. Worse, we were still in England, and several hours behind schedule because of the speed restrictions now in place.

The host brought a tray with breakfast: tea and a bacon roll (sandwich). Outside it was still dark.


When the daylight came, the impact of the storm was apparent: fields were flooded with brown water, and the river that paralleled the tracks was over its banks. Some roads were under water, and the water was close to several houses. I left my berth and was looking out one of the windows when another passenger told me to look down at the adjacent rail track. The two rails served as the banks of a stream rushing down the track. Later in the day, after I'd passed, the line was closed.


The time for Parkrun came and went, but I reached Glasgow at 11 a.m., and after a number of subsequent train cancellations, arrived home at 3 p.m.

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