Mind the Sap

You may have noticed Christmas is well on the way and nothing has underlined this point more to me than the sudden drop in the overall sobriety of passengers on the C2C line. 
It all started with a very, very drunk guy on the 9pm train from Fenchurch Street last Thursday, he was one of those harmless drunks who had been out with his wife for the evening and decided to have a little get-to-know-you with any poor soul who happened to be in his line of vision. I got the impression from his wife’s complete lack of caring that this was something he did often. Fortunately I had picked my seat well and although I could clearly hear him, he could not see me so I was free to listen and laugh at the expense of those who had been less wise in their seating choices. 
 I don’t really mind these sort of drunks because although they are annoying I kind of agree with their sentiments and don’t mind their compulsive needs to befriend random strangers and put the world to rights. Ok, the fact that he wished everyone in the carriage Merry Christmas about ninety times did wear a little thin but hey, he didn’t try and bottle anyone and for that I am truly grateful.  But, it all took a rather sour turn when after alighting at Benfleet Station I heard several panicked shouts of  ‘STOP THE TRAIN!’  I turned back to see that Mr. Drunk had managed to fall down the gap between the train and the platform.  Yes, the thing that London Underground has been, I believed, unnecessarily warning us about all these years actually happened.
 Now the next part of this story doesn’t reflect too well on me, try as I might there is no way to embellish the fact that a blind panic overtook me and I legged it. I ran like the proverbial wind.  Any concern that I had for the drunken guy was overshadowed by the fact that I did not want to witness what might happen next. I’m not completely callous however, when I got to the car, slightly out of breath from my sprint, I turned to see the train still at the station and that the driver had got out so I’m about 89 percent sure he was ok.  Anyway, I would have heard by now had anyone been injured by a train in Benfleet, a town where a battle between the Vikings and Saxons in 894 remains the most interesting thing to have ever happened there. 
 Now drunken episode number two did not involve an amusing, ‘I’ve had a great night out and now want to hug the world’ drunk.  This one was drinking a can of Stella at 9am on a packed commuter train and exclaiming that ‘Yes, I am on my way to the Magistrates Court, yeah, I bet you’re all listening now. I’M A CRIMINAL!.’  He stunk, and he intimidated me and I’m sure there was some awful incident in his life that had lead him down this path but shouting ‘I may be a drunk but at least I’m not miserable like you b******s!’ did not go anywhere towards perking me up first thing on a Monday morning.  Perhaps one day the commute just became too much for him…

3 Responses to “Mind the Sap”

  1. 1 explosivechutney December 8, 2009 at 6:02 pm

    You may have ran when that man fell in the gap between the train and platform, but at least you didn’t stand there and gape which is what most people probably did! (Or what I would probably have done) – the classic car crash curiosity. Or in this case, someone-actually-falling-in-the-gap curiosity.

  2. 2 Fred December 28, 2009 at 7:43 pm

    I’m impressed that he managed to fall down the gap?! There’s barely a gap there? was it just his ankle or all the way up to his knee? 🙂

    • 3 fenchurchforum December 28, 2009 at 10:45 pm

      Well as I said, I wasn’t keen to stick around but from my fleeting glance as I sped away, it looked as though he was down there to his waist. Lord knows how he managed it, I am not too keen to find out myself!!

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