Not working

You know how it is, you get home from work after a fractious day in the office, you are committed to go do dinner with your partners friend, somebody from your past, a relative, or to a party where you just know you won't enjoy it. And lo and behold, you get there you don't have a good time because your attitude isn't right.

So, yep, I don't want to be here and so I'm only seeing the bad, but honestly, there isn't anything else.

Today I had to travel to Manchester. It's about 200-miles from here and to get there you have to drive through one of the most congested roads in the country, the M6 around Birmingham. So it would take 3-hours each way easy, so I looked at the train time table and yes, that works. 7.15am train there, 2.45pm train back.

Heres what went wrong today. Last night I remembered to get 5x £1 coins, call it  $10 for the parking machine at the station. I get there and the price is £6.50, call it $13 for a days parking. But even at that price, in a large car park, there no one there to take money, help with change. Machines don't do notes, credit cards etc. So, you either pay the right change, pay too much or get towed. Sucks.

I left my laptop bag in the car, legged it into the station, Job-1, collect pre-paid tickets from the machine. Even with pre-paid, advanced purchase, it was still going to cost me £120/$240 for the train fare. Except, guess what? The machines won't print advanced tickets, please join the line. I see the guy, he prints my tickets, I ask for change, he obliges, I leg it back out to the car park, pay for my parking ticket, place it on the dashboard and walk back to the station. On my way I pass four other people walking back to the parking lot, they mustn't have had change either. Why do people put up with this?

There must be 200+ spaces, at £6.50 per car, thats at least £1000/$2000 per day, probably more. For that price you'd think they could afford to pay someone for a few hours at the start of the day to take money, give change, issue tickets?

Anyway, train shows up on time; reserved seat open, in fact the train(Virgin Rail) is pretty good. The have power points for laptops and phones, reasonable toilets. Can't complain. O yes I can. We get an hour into the journey and the inevitable announcement comes on the loudspeaker system. "Ladies and gentleman, Virgin trains would like to apologies for the delay, due a points failure on the mainline, this train will be rerouting via the east midlands, and will arrive approximately 60, six-zero, minutes late into Manchester".

Sigh, does anything work in this country? I'm sure some people would have whiled away the trip looking at the enviable acres of countryside, the wide vista of open fields. Me? I saw mile upon mile of fencing, clogged up with discarded plastic bags and paper trash; yard after yard of unkept back gardens, overgrown, full over unwanted discarded belongings; house after house with barely enough room to swing a cat.

Could you guess I don't want to be here? Does anything work in this country?
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I feel for you kid. I did not like my visit to Manchester and don't believe I'll ever go back again. However, the hotel there was not to bad. At least they did have exceptionally FAST internet. :) Made the trip worth the stop over in Manchester.

When will you be back State Side? Hope the rest of the trip goes much better. And just know that the sun will shine, somewhere sometime!
Back Tuesday, see latest journal entry! I don't mind central Manchester so much... there are some very good people there.
someone is definitely in the wrong head space for a fun social encounter.

Having said that, I know exactly what you mean and go thru that alot.