Friday, October 08, 2021

Terminus Two, One Through

There was a new Central Line tube station being tried out, and I'd ended up there on my way to Stratford. We'd all had to get off and change and people were grumbling. At first I thought I'd mistakenly got a train in the wrong direction, but I hadn't. The station was semi-open to daylight, with distressed pink brick walls that had once belonged to a factory or warehouse of some sort. We drifted towards the other platforms, all on a level: our through train had gone back where it came from, and the other two platforms were terminals; another train would be along soon. 

Sure enough, one turned up, driven by an excited trainee with their instructor in the cab beside them. There were other trainees crammed into the confined space, and as he drew the train up to the end of the platform, he bumped into it. I kind of knew that was going to happen, and I burst out laughing, and so did the other trainees, their hands over their mouths so they instructor couldn't see their glee. 

I started to explore a bit. There was a tabby cat sitting between the rails on the third line. The end of its tail was missing and I advised it to move, because it would lose more than just its tail if it stayed where it was.

What was the name of this station? High up on the wall were painted four words in old-fashioned capital letters: 'St .... .... Manor' or something like that. The paint had worn off and you couldn't read it properly. The back of the station had obviously been a wine bar at some time, and I walked through to the ticket hall. There, there was a waiting room with chairs with walls of emerald green. They were covered with paintings in gold frames, but in close inspection the 'paintings' were cheap and garish prints.

I started taking photographs and filming. Nobody was going to believe this; the other passengers had disappeared on to a train that had drawn in while I was exploring. On my phone screen Dad appeared, smiling and laughing. At that point, I knew it was a dream because he died more than ten years ago. 

I woke up.

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