Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Part and Parcel

I chose the picture above because it is appropriate to the post today.

I have had several jobs over the years. At one time I worked for the Railways.

One of the stations I worked at was Bordersley Green. I would turn up at 8pm and clock on.

I would then wait for the foreman to arrive. When he arrived we would go as a group out of the gates and over the road to a small pub. We would then sit by the fire and drink for about two hours not forgetting to buy the foreman a drink. At midnight we would be back in the station and make our way to the platform. The platform had a loading dock in the middle where post office vans would reverse. We would then empty the contents onto the platform. A goods train would pull in and our job was empty the platform by loading the mailbags into the wagons. Each wagon had a separate destination.
By about half past twelve we would have a mountain of bags and a 100yard train to load. We would start off with a bag and traipse along the line of wagons until we found the destination then throw the bag in. The downside to this system was we only had 20 minutes to load the train. With five minutes to go we would still have half the bags on the platform. The only solution was to load everything on to the nearest wagons. Inevitably Newton Abbot or some such station would receive a mountain of bags for every destination in the country while a wagon at the end of the train for London would have only two bags.
An hour later the system would start all over again. What amazed me apart from the fact that anybody ever got their parcels was that no one ever questioned the system.
We clocked on 2 hours before the first train and it was physically impossible to load the train correctly in the time allowed.

I enjoyed the job and company, and it payed well.

Today I did a painting in the gallery and Alex mounted some prints.

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