December 5, 2014, by Gemma Coleman
The Nightmare before Christmas
I‘m not great with most forms of transport. I fall off my bike in front of mobile cars. I regularly press the ‘stop’ button on the bus too early and end up walking an extra half an hour to get home (maybe that’s just a British politeness thing, though). And once, I fell asleep on a plane and woke up to find that for the past 8 hours, I’d had my head in the lap of the very understanding stranger next to me. Last week’s train journey was not much better.
I gave myself an hour to get from lovely Lenton to the train station (a little excessive for the 10 minutes it takes on the Indigo bus, but as you’ll find out, it pays to be overly cautious). Sitting at the bus stop, I’m one of those people that likes to prep themselves in plenty of time- perhaps a ‘here’s something I prepared earlier’ kind of gal. So I got my pound out, whipped out my student card. Plain sailing Gemma, plain sailing.
My smugness had clearly got the better of me. The bus pulled in, I rose from my seat regally. And then my world came crashing down. My pound had gone. “What?!” I hear you cry, “it can’t have gone, it was just in your hand!” Well ladies and gents, it had vanished out of my life forever. I fumbled around on the floor, sure to find it among the wet leaves. No, it wasn’t there. I re-checked my purse, my pockets. No, it wasn’t there. I even began to suspiciously eye up the elderly lady next to me, complex conspiracy theories running through my mind. But by then, the bus had gone and I realised with horror that I would have to walk. Oh, and did I mention the biblical rains? Loving life.
Pounding up hell hill, my jeans were beginning to stick to me, my hair started to drip and I quickly came to the conclusion that a suede weekend bag was the single most ridiculous purchase for English weather. My favourite part of the hike was when the car sprayed water over me from a roadside puddle. No sarcasm here, it genuinely made me laugh- this could only happen to me.
I sprinted to the train station, breath ragged, knees weak, and threw myself through the train doors as they started to bleep and close. People were staring as I manically cheered about the frankly incredible achievement of arriving on time. But I didn’t care- haters gonna hate. If this experience has taught me one thing it’s this: just don’t leave Nottingham (or get a taxi).