There’s nothing like a long train journey test your patience.
Leaving aside issues such as delays, breakdowns and heating problems, it’s my fellow passengers I have most difficulty with.
Let me elaborate ...
Personal stereos – surely the clue is in the word ‘personal’. To me that means the user can hear the music but no one sharing the carriage can. Spending three hours listening to a constant thump, thump, thumping isn’t likely to leave me in the best of moods.
Alcohol – by all means enjoy a glass or two to help you relax, but please don’t get drunk. You’ll not come across as witty and intelligent, just loud and obnoxious. On a recent trip I had to listen to a clearly inebriated hairdresser spend the best part of 10 minutes arranging an appointment with a client. It took all my self-restraint to stop myself grabbing the phone and advising the prospective customer against someone who was unlikely to be able to hold a pair of scissors steady.
Sniffers - probably the worst of the lot, people who have a cold but no hanky. Their constant sniffing is enough to drive me demented.
Me? I’m the perfect travelling companion of course ...