I should have taken one "S-Bahn" (local train) earlier, I knew it. Only because I wanted to finish something, I didn't,and so I chased my delayed train out of the station instead of catching it in the nick of time.
On the other hand I would have missed something, but I didn't know that when I trotted to the next track and got on the later train. At least this one wasn't delayed.
At the first stop my sister came on the train, on the other side of the wagon. She didn't see me, but the train was too crowded anyway to find seats next to each other.
At the next station we stopped, people got off, people got on, but ... hey, we didn't move on. We stood, well, not us (except for a few luckless passengers who hadn't found a seat), but the train did. I suspected the earlier train was still in our track, but then the announcement came:
"Dear passengers, due to an emergency ... an emergency with a doctor ... a doctor who will be here soon, we can't continue our ride at the moment." Ah yes. That was an unusual announcement and don't forget I have been commuting for 23 years. Unusual was not only the fact that there had obviously something happenend ON the train, but also the way the conductor sounded.
Around me people started calling their family, others discussed the announcement. A merry group of three thought the conductor might have had a little too much mulled wine, the girl next to me thought he had sounded upset, my sister later voted for out of breath.
We waited. After a while from the corner of my eye I noticed some red and white jackets entering the train (not alone, I suppose, although THAT would have been really exciting). That was all we saw. At least after a short while the train began to move again.
Suddenly there was another announcement:
"Passengers going to Geislingen and Ulm should get off in Goeppingen. There will be a fast one - behind me."
People started giggling again. A fast "one"? I felt as if this man did that on purpose to keep us in a good mood inspite of the delay of now "circa 21 minutes" of which he hoped "we might be able to reduce it a little". What an entertainer!
Then he continued: "You know we had an emergeny in the train, an emergency ...". Here you could hear he was about to tell us what happened and ears were popping up like bunny ears. "An emergency, well, you know how that is." What?? The ears went down again. He didn't want to tell us? Of course we knew he was right, it was none of our business at all, but we happily had given away "circa 21 minutes" of our lives, didn't we deserve to know what for? Obviously not.
Shortly before Goeppingen I got up to pick up my sister at her seat. We stood together at the door when the conductor went for the final kill:
"I want to remind passengers going to Geislingen and Ulm - and only there! - to get off at Goeppingen to take the train - now what's it called again?" After a little pause he told us the train number and "it's faster". I was surprised he didn't get any standing ovations for that. Many of us were standing already, giving a little applause wouldn't have been difficult to do ;-)
Still talking about this train ride we went to my sister's bicycle when suddenly a person with her hand raised to a high five appeared behind us - sister # 3.
"Who else is for founding a fan club?" she asked and we high fived each other.
Then she told us she had been sitting in the same wagon, just on the upper deck.
Welcome the three members of the "Unknown Train Conductor Fan Club 2009"!! ;-)