13/08

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Techniquest

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In case you hadn't guessed, I went to Manchester for the 0723 Manchester to Newquay HST. I eventually awoke in my room and left, annoyed with the non-working shower. At Piccadilly, which I reach around 0710, James surprises me with his presence again. We note the carriage numbers and 43s, James being back to equal me in 43s, with 14 to see. I decide to go FC on this trip, hence I join 41081, at the front. James will no doubt be able to recall just how happy I was on departure!

We arrive at Wilmslow 3 up! At Crewe, we have 15 minutes before continuing, so I get some pictures of 43089 and 47843. The batteries weren't having me get 47828! A tradition of having coffee in FC was continued, this being the only time I'd have a chance for one (Crewe to Stafford). Updated my book, then started getting ready to grab my window. Got 2 new 350s, a 37, 57, 86 and 90 on this stretch!

At New Street, we obviously need a turnaround, so 089 is on the front now to Bristol and onwards. No more being near the front, but hey, tons of FC and H-O today! Made the most of my £15 upgrade with another coffee at Cheltenham Spa. Again, we arrive early.

At BP, we arrive 7-8 minutes early, plenty of time for a picture of MML at BP! I really didn't want to alight here, but I had to. My HST home is late (typical, the MP - BP bit I was worried about delays on, it's the last 90 minutes to home the delays come in), due to problematic trains between Paddington and Reading. Whilst waiting for the PD HST, I started tucking into my snack box, which was considerably improved since my one in July 2004. Still, the cheese, cherry cake and fruit pieces are left, they stunk, weren't my cup of tea anyway! I board in 40731, behind 43131.

After updating my report, a bit of Green Day is called for. Pity the batteries don't last. I look up after the masterpiece formally referred to as the Severn Railway Tunnel to see a sign say 'Welcome to Wales'. It might as well say 'You're stuck here forever' to me, I can't see my move back to merry ol' England coming soon.

Anyway, enough moping. Time for a coffee and biscuits. Still undecided whether the FGW coffee is better than the VT coffee. At least we run non-stop to Swansea. At Cardiff Central we waited for ages as passengers for the other stations kept joining. 3 or 4 announcements on-board kept telling them it wasn't calling at intermediate stations to Swansea, but hey. The TM got it right when he passed me by and said 'Can I make myself any clearer?'. I won't say what I'd have been wanting to say, suffice to say some choice language would have desired.

Bored by now, I grab the batteries out of my cam (it wouldn't be needed again today) and use them for my CD player. 'Wake me up when September ends', mmm, if only that was possible...The high I had on leaving MP has gone by now, in case you hadn't guessed. Why? I'm back in Wales, not by choice, then there's the fact I'm doing the night shift tonight and a morning shift tomorrow in the worst kitchen I've ever seen...I'm already dying for my next trip to England, and I've not been back in Wales for 1 hour yet! :shock: Once again, the phrase 'I'm a trainspotter, get me out of here!' springs to mind. At least passing Bridgend and PTP (the latter we must have passed at 70mph+!) puts a smile on my face. Coffee #5 for today now! The rain is still coming down, with the only dry section of the trip being from BNS to BP departure. 'Here comes the rain again' sums up the weather well. Too busy writing to notice Neath go past. Oops.

At Swansea, we arrive approximately 25 minutes late. I got 46530 on the 110 back home, then I went on here pretty much straight away.

A lot of moping and moaning, but hey, tough.
 
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