Monday, 1 September 2008

The Pregnant Card Is Always Trumps

We deliberately sat at the end of the back row of seats, as close to the exit as possible. This is because FastCat ferries employ what can only be described as a reckless luggage system.

Any bags that are not "hand luggage" get left in a pile out on the deck close to the gangway. On the first crossing four days ago there was a bit of a scandal with the bags.

Basically, some twits ran off with the wrong bags, which annoys me because it is not that hard to take your own bag. Everyone knows that half the bags are medium-sized black wheelies that look pretty similar, I mean, c'mon, just look at the pile.

Having the luggage in this free-for-all mound by the gangway made us feel quite vulnerable, so we picked these seats to make sure we got there first.

As the ferry pulled in we got out of our seats early and waited by the exit. We were at the front of the queue and feeling pretty pleased with ourselves. An elderly couple started bustling about behind us.

"We have a train to catch at ten past," the old dear said, "and last time the ferry was late and we missed it." The statement was as loaded as you can get. They wanted to be at the front.

"So have we", my wife said.

"But you're not eighty years old", the lady replied.

"But you're not eight months pregnant", my wife retorted.

Everyone laughed in good humour, although, I think we laughed a bit more genuinely than they did. The doors opened and we safely retrieved our bag.

Then we let them past, after all, they were eighty years old.

Funnily enough, there had been a similar incident the day before. We had got on to a bus that was very full and there were no seats.

We had to stand in the aisle, and the pregnant missus had to lean against the luggage rack. There was a sort of awkward murmuring amongst the masses.

On each bus there are a selection of "disability" or "elderly" seats. (I'm desperately looking for a more politically correct description but it is alluding me.)

When the bus is full, the following get first priority on these seats:

Injured (e.g. wheelchair, broken leg)

But when there is a stand-off between two of the above, no-one seems to know the pecking order. Maybe there isn't one.

This was the cause of the awkward murmuring. The bus was mainly full of elderly. A young women gave up her seat for my wife. (I, of course, remained standing, not falling into the priority bracket).

As the bus pulled away my wife could hear two old dears behind her muttering. "I'm glad she gave up her seat" one said to the other, "because I certainly wasn't going to". "Me neither", said the other, shaking her head.

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As I have quite a few new readers since I became a "Jelly Biter" I've put this up here again. To understand the context you must read this post!