Monthly Archives: June 2011

Normal service should be resumed on Saturday

Hopefully I will be back at Orton Mere on Saturday assisted by Jason.

My leg is feeling much better and I need now to give it some exercise, and chasing money is as good exercise as I can think of.

Please feel free to pop in for a natter and spend some money.

If I am having a doze on the seats outside when you arrive please feel free to give me a nudge with a used fiver.

Oh dear we are shut!!!

Still not up to doing a full day at the station and due to the fact I could not find cover the station was closed today.

This I must admit irritates me greatly, people pay good money when they visit the railway and everything where possible should be open. But one of the snags of volunteers is that they often do what they want not what’s always needed.

The station will I am pleased to say be open on Sunday for all services, and I suppose 1 day out of 2 is better than being closed both days, but it is in the end only 50% of what I would like the situation to be.

We are in difficult economic times and the railway like all other tourist attractions is not immune from the downturn in spending, therefore I feel it is vital that we are in a position to not only take the maximum amount of money we can but also offer value for money and hopefully encourage return repeat visits.

Hopefully I will be back in almost full swing next weekend, but that depends on how much better my leg gets in the coming week.

Could you put it another way? Such as English!

Now the one thing you get with a blog is spam in the comments facility.

Anything from how to make things bigger and harder or how to get more people to read your blog in the first place.

Well now they are apparently expanding their horizons and putting sentences into the comments in the vain hope the message will get through the filtering system and your readers can click on the link to their website.

Problem is their grasp of English is at best poor. I just received the following as a comment on one of my entries.

Exclusive material, thank you to the writer. It is actually incomprehensible in my

opinion at present, however in common, the usefulness and importance is
 mind-boggling. With thanks and all the best...

Answers to what the above means in pencil please on the back of used fivers!!!

There but not in body

The keen amongst you will have noted that there was not a blog post yesterday, the even keener will have noticed that I was not at Orton Mere either.

Nathan and Stephen opened the station for me yesterday as I have pulled something in my lower right leg. Now I suppose at my age I should be grateful I can still pull!!

Anyway I am at home keeping my beady eyes on the station via the webcams.

The lads did a good job yesterday so my thanks to them, though could not get the staff together for today I am sorry to say.

Sitting here I know I shouldn’t but I feel guilty at not opening, as I say I know I shouldn’t but I do. It’s just the way I am.

Depending on how my leg/ankle gets on then hopefully some sort of presence next week but won’t know until later in the week.

Even the birds were walking

Not the best of days weather wise. But Jason & I took some money in the shop, we even sold some ice cream.

Dismal though and not what we would expect for a Sunday in June. Still the one thing we can’t control the weather

Not open in the week so we will see what we can do next weekend.

One of those days that wont be missed

I must admit I held great hope for today, we had sunshine though considering it’s June it was cool out of the sun.

But it just did not happen, Brian and I were to put it mildly not exactly busy, the biggest strain was deciding when to have a drink.

Today is Sue my wife’s birthday, and instead of spending the day with her I was at the station, such is the difficulty of getting cover for stations. We need more volunteers, shame a few of those on the train doing not a lot did not put their names forward.

I strained a muscle in my right leg yesterday at some stage, so that was bandaged up and I was going round first thing like short John Silver!

We had a flow of customers but nothing to get excited about and ice cream went at a steady rate. But the business spark was just not there.

A few tickets were sold for the third service but nothing to get the pulse racing.

Brian bought the Sun newspaper and to show how exciting it was we even read the text in it rather than just look at the pictures.

That’s it really highlight and candidate for the idiot of the month award was a woman who when she came on the platform read the sign about no public toilets, then came over to me and asked if we had any toilets! Before you ask yes she was blonde.

Trains were slightly late on all services except the final diesel one, but nothing that caused us a problem and all in all we had some really nice people in, all of which were visitors to the area rather than locals.

Tomorrow I have Jason with me so that ensures an interesting day as he looses none of his keenness and is good to work with.

Early night for me must rest my leg. It’s such an exciting life.

Waiting for a delivery

All excitement at the station today, I don’t know how I contained myself.

It was delivery day for ice cream drinks etc. The excitement of receiving a box of plastic spoons has to be experienced to be appreciated.

Nobody about except for a couple who came on the platform about an hour before the first train, they looked at the times and then beat a hasty retreat as soon as they heard me, my fame must be spreading.

First train was late, but what the hell it always is on a Wednesday when we have school parties.

Delivery arrived and once unloaded and put away I went home. Hard to find motivation on an empty station with no passing public and as I was single manned I could not hold hands with others and try and contact the living.

So there ended an average Wednesday at Orton Mere.

Brian with me on Saturday so at least if we are quiet he will have bought a newspaper I can read. Never let it be said I don’t look on the positive side of life!!!

There is nothing to see along the Nene, so I was told.

Sitting beavering away here this morning something reminded me of a comment made by a customer at the station.

They said there is nothing to see along the Nene! So here to prove them wrong are a few of my pictures taken at different times of the year and in no particular order.

100_0657   100_0694

100_1952   100_1953

100_1954   100_1988

100_2034   100_2537

100_2547   100_3058

100_3062   100_3590

100_4092   100_4100

100_4451   100_4464

100_4468   100_4482

100_6737   100_7503

100_7517   100_7518

100_7800   101_0154

Personally I think there is lot’s to see and photograph, what do you think?

Now this is getting better

Like yesterday we had cold and wind, but we also had customers.

Nice day turnover wise in both the shop and with ticket sales.

Not rushed just steady so Jason and I could spend time chatting to people which is what makes the job enjoyable.

Trains ran fairly well and all four services were steam which like yesterday was a bonus.

Jason is always good to work with he is an enthusiastic lad and the customers like him which is a help.

Ice cream was steady which to be honest with the weather we had was all I could really expect.

A couple of moans about the toilet or rather the lack of a toilet and if I get many more I might just pay for a special poster that covers the side of the building and points out that there are no public toilets. Then again if you slapped some people across the head with the notice and then made them read it they would still ask.

Next running day is Wednesday and I will be there if only for the delivery I need to have, whether I open or not will depend on the weather.

No real outstanding visitors today so all in all an average day where we took money.

Steady as she goes

Today could best be described as steady!

Not too bad in ticket sales but could be better, then again of course it could always be better.

Nathan with me today and the lad is getting better he only mentioned buses about 50 times. Still he is keen and seems to attract the idiots who flock to talk to him so my job is easier!!

Not one daft question today which is quite a worry, without the daft questions where would be the amusement I ask myself.

Had some chap in moaning about lack of toilets and that his daughter was desperate, the time he took to whinge he could have got the poor child home. It never ceases to amaze me how people think that by moaning I will be able to produce a toilet. All these people have several things in common.

Firstly they are not paying customers, it’s never somebody buying something that’s asking it’s always somebody passing. Plus they never ever say the word “Please” and in not doing so they prove yet again that ignorance is not the domain of just the young as many people these days claim. I would go so far as to say that largely these days the younger people are better mannered than the middle aged visitors in many cases. They can’t grasp that being short tempered and rude does nothing to help their cause at all.

You will have gathered by now that the lack of toilets since the council closed the local public ones are an on going problem. I have even put up signs saying there are no public toilets and a number to call the council and complain but as always the great British public have limited selected vision.

Right we will see what tomorrow brings, Jason is with me so it will be an enjoyable day staff wise as it also was today, at least Jason does not like buses!!