I’m on a train to the West Country. All the tables were taken so I’m balancing my Macbook half on the table and half on my stomach. My phone is on the seat next to me, as is an Ernest Hemingway paperback that I’d intended to read but didn’t get round to having passed almost the entire journey on Twitter.
We’ve just pulled into Swindon. A child named Daniel has got on and sat behind me and is demanding access to his mother’s iPad. A man has kindly offered the family a table but Apple fan Dan’s mother has politely refused; they’re not on for long.
My phone has just vibrated in my pocket. It’s an Uber receipt. Between 0:44 and 1:02 on Sunday morning I travelled 5.42 miles at a total cost of £6.07. I rode with Tahir. If you’re thinking it’s rather cheap, it’s because I split the ride with Liam.
Dan is struggling to turn on the entertainment screen on the seat in front of him. When Dan is my age things will be a lot different. The entertainment screen on the seat in front of him will know it is Dan and hook up to his smart watch so he can resume playing Championship Manager 27/28 from where he left off at home.
Barclays have recently begun personalising the messages on advertising hoardings at Premiership football games. Thank you for your support, Elisa McAteer. You are the true spirit of the game.
A man has told us that the next stop is Chippenham. When did we stop being passengers and start being customers? Probably Thatcher’s fault. The politician, not the cider. That is a West Country joke that Dan would not understand as he is barely ten years old.
I’ve just texted my mother telling her I’m soon to arrive. She’s a bit annoyed at me because I said I’d be in at lunchtime and it’s 15:19. She has replied: “Ok see you at station”. When Dan is my age, his Mum will send him short video messages that he will receive on his smart glasses. She may or may not be annoyed at him.
When Dan is my age, when I get off a train the train will say thank you for your support, Edward. You are the true spirit of travel. Either that or I’ll get in a driverless Uber and spend the journey trying to turn on the entertainment screen.