The power of positive thinking . . .

November 12, 2009 · Posted in brain dump . . . 

I started yesterday with a bit of a rant . . . it wasn’t my fault, it was the fault of the idiot in the car who turned left in front of my bike and missed taking me out by about 2 inches. Although that wasn’t the first thing that went wrong yesterday. I woke up nearly 2 hours late on account of forgetting to set my alarm.

The train seemed to be a bit slow on the way to London then he tube was packed (because I was in the middle of rush hour) and seemed to crawl the remainder of my journey. Being late into work was particularly annoying because I was supposed to run some system maintenance starting at 8am and now I’ve got to reschedule it. Most of the actual working day ticked along fine until somehow, and this is the first time in 2 years I’ve done it, I got on the wrong train and ended up in Peterborough. Once I got back to Cambridge I discovered I’d got a flat rear tyre on my bike.I finally got home nearly 4 hours after after I left work for a trip that normally takes a about an hour and fourty-five minutes.

What a day . . .

I’ve decided to start this day on a more positive note with a thank you to a few people who, in small ways, helped to make things yesterday just a little better.

The first was a telephone Customer Services representative. On Tuesday morning while running down the platform for my morning train my bike light fell out of my cycle helmet and slide off the platform. I couldn’t do anything about it at the time but on Wednesday morning (yesterday) I noticed it was still there. Later that day I tried to call Cambridge station to ask if it was possible for someone to collect it for me. Unable to find a number I called National Express customer services. The lady I spoke to told me that she didn’t have a direct number for Cambridge station and she couldn’t put me through because ‘”the stations don’t like getting phone calls”. I expressed my disbelief that there was no way I could get through to the station, explained why I wanted to talk to them and she offered to help. She took my information, rang the station, talked to the platform guard and called me back with some information.

You could say that she was ‘only doing her job’ but she did it happily, efficiently and politely. Thank you.

Number 2 and we’re back to my dropped bike light. On returning to Cambridge following my epic trip via Peterborough I spoke to the guard on the platform. He of course knew nothing about the phone call or the prior arrangement having only started work an hour before, however, after waiting five minutes for the next train to go through (probably very sensible) he was more than happy to walk down the platform with me and collect my light off the tracks.

Simple, courteous, uncomplaining. Thank you.

As mentioned when I got to my bike I discovered I had a flat type. I don’t have a pump in my bag (idiot I know) and no one unlocking bikes at that point had a pump. Getting a cab home would cost around £8 plus a £10 surcharge to carry my bike (!!). The Station apparently doesn’t carry a bike pump (why would they, there’s only about 1000 bikes locked up there every day), the bike shop had closed and the British Transport Police we absent as always. With no other option I start the annoying 3 miles walk home, wheeling my bike.

As I reached the end of the car park 3 (probably) female students turned in the other end, one of them also wheeling a bike. Worth an ask I thought and so it was as she had a basic, but totally functional, pump with her. They all stopped for a chat while I sorted my tyre out and wished me well, hoping that the quick fix would last my journey home.

It didn’t cost them anything more than time but for helping a total stranger in need, thank you.

Finally, to theWife . . . just for being theWife . . . thank you

Now . . .fingers crossed I’ll have a better day today 🙂


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