miss_s_b: (Britishness: Tea)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
I got the train into Bradford to go to work today. I get the train into work a lot. Sometimes it's late, and I gripe. Sometimes it's full, and I gripe about that too, especially if it's a smelly ancient Pacer. Sometimes it's empty, and the seats are nice, and I get a table to myself. Sometimes I get the sexy driver with the long hair and beard*. Sometimes I have chats with @NorthernRailOrg on twitter**.

Today is the first time I have ever been on a train that hit a person.

Bradford Interchange's platforms are all bay platforms, so I usually try to sit as close to the driver's cab as possible, to minimise the number of people I have to squeeze past when I get off the train. Today I was sitting at the nearest table to the drivers' cab. I was playing a game on my phone, and intermittently glancing at twitter and email. There had been a lot of emails in the morning because of an administrative error causing problems for one of my members who is attending Lib Dem Conference next month. I was checking to see if things were getting sorted out. I wasn't really paying attention to the train. The train just was.

Then there was a noise like crump and the train jerked. I think I swore. I looked across at the two girls sitting at the table across the aisle from me and was about to say what the hell was THAT? when a human body described a graceful arc past the window we were all three looking at.

Suddenly talking seemed a bit pointless.

The train pulled up and stopped for a while then took us in to Bradford. I texted someone I knew was in Bradford, because I needed a friendly face. As I got off the train I tried not to look at the dent on the front of it, but I couldn't help myself. It wasn't that big a dent, really. Not for a human life. There was a dead pigeon too, stuck to the rubbery bit which I don't know the name of on the front of the train.

The person I texted met me at the entrance to BDI and gave me copious hugs. They were very necessary hugs. He's a good hugger anyway, but today those hugs were especially appreciated. When you've witnessed a thing like that, any form of human contact is good, just to confirm that you're still alive and that people care about you.

And then I went to work. Because you've got to carry on, haven't you?

I have since heard that the incident was a fatality. I hope that the person who was hit is at rest, and that their family are coping, and that the driver of the train is OK, because Cthulhu knows that's got to be a horrible thing to happen to you at work.

I have the urge to contact everybody that I love and tell them all that I love them and how valuable they are to me, but that's impractical and they'd probably just call me a soppy bugger anyway.

I'll say one more thing. The next time I am umming and ahing about doing something, and the person who has asked me to do it says to me Oh go on, you could get hit by a train/bus tomorrow... I'm going to have some pretty mixed feelings about that. Life is short, and should be grabbed with both hands; this is an idea I am fully on board with, and today has renewed my determination to do just that. But every time someone says that now, I am going to see a train window, and a horizontal human body curving past it in slow motion...

*Not that I have a crush on a train driver. Nope. Not me O:-)
**often enough that I can usually tell when Tim or Lindsay is the one manning the twitter account, because those two are the ones I talk to most often.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 05:33 pm (UTC)
missdiane: (Bear hiding eyes)
From: [personal profile] missdiane
How completely horrifying. I'm sorry for you, the other folks on the train and the family of the person hit


Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 05:40 pm (UTC)
pseudomonas: (harp)
From: [personal profile] pseudomonas
Poor you! That sounds utterly traumatic, and you're not being soppy to be shaken by it.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 05:47 pm (UTC)
hollymath: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hollymath
Love you too. :)

What an awful thing for you to see. I too hope the person is at rest, and their family and the train driver are okay. (I know at least some train companies have provisions for supporting drivers in situations like this; it is a sad necessity but I do hope it's always available in their line of work.)

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 06:03 pm (UTC)
el_staplador: (Default)
From: [personal profile] el_staplador
I am so sorry this happened. Thinking of you and the two girls, and the driver, and the person who died, and the people who miss them.


Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 06:03 pm (UTC)
haggis: (Default)
From: [personal profile] haggis
You're a soppy bugger. It's one of the things I like about you. Sending you enormous hugs and tea (herbal) and sympathy. Be gentle with yourself for a bit.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 06:27 pm (UTC)
matgb: (Snuggle)
From: [personal profile] matgb
Had missed this when it happened, J told me a few minutes ago then I checked my email. Love you, big hugs when you get home.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 06:42 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] magister
Love you too. See you when you get in.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 07:42 pm (UTC)
ponygirl72: (Gene/Alex)
From: [personal profile] ponygirl72
It's not the same thing, really, but a couple of months ago, my boss's mother, who was in her 90s and in poor health, went into hospice care. He'd called in the family to come see her, and I was trying to make a point of asking how she-- and he-- were doing whenever I saw him at the office.

One particular day shortly before she died, I asked how she was, and he replied that she knew the end was coming; it was just a matter of when. I responded philosophically that the same could be said of all of us, and he laughed and agreed. A couple days later she died, but eleven days after *that*, the poor guy went home after work on a perfectly normal Friday, only to discover his long-time girlfriend dead of natural causes in their condo. She was 48 years old.

"That could be said of all of us," indeed. I have no idea if he even remembers me saying that; I just really hope that me saying that didn't flash through his mind when he found her, because that would be horrible. :-/

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 08:49 pm (UTC)
ponygirl72: (Gene/Alex)
From: [personal profile] ponygirl72
*snuggles back*

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 08:43 pm (UTC)
nanila: (tachikoma: broken)
From: [personal profile] nanila
All my sympathy. As you know, I witnessed similar not so long ago.

I've made an additional donation to Mind today for you (and for that person, and for the train driver).

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 10:52 pm (UTC)
hollymath: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hollymath
That's a really lovely gesture. What a good idea. I'll try to keep it in mind if I'm in a position to do so in future when I feel as sad and powerless as I do about this.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 09:15 pm (UTC)
ext_550458: (Default)
From: [identity profile] strange-complex.livejournal.com
Oh no, I am so sorry to hear about this, for everybody involved. My sister had a similar experience just a week after starting secondary school, including seeing the body (though not quite the way you did - it was after she'd got off the train), so I know second-hand from her how much it can shake people up. Well done to you for carrying on to work as normal, which I hope helped in its own way. I'm also very sure that your house full of amazing people will be helping you to de-stress and unwind this evening too, and very glad to know that you have them all gathered around you.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 09:43 pm (UTC)
ext_51145: (Default)
From: [identity profile] andrewhickey.info
Hope you're feeling much better now you're surrounded by people and dogs that love you. As always, here if you need anything at all.

Date: Tuesday, September 16th, 2014 10:28 pm (UTC)
sfred: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sfred
Thinking of you.

Date: Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 04:01 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: Jeune fille de Megare statue, B&W (Default)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
I'm really sorry you witnessed that. I saw something similar happen (didn't see the body, did see the bicycle) and it really shook me up for a long time. *hugs* to you and those looking after you!

Date: Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 10:01 am (UTC)
sir_guinglain: (Default)
From: [personal profile] sir_guinglain
Hugs from here, too.

Date: Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 11:37 am (UTC)
ggreig: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ggreig
Sorry you had to experience that. I hope the intensity of the experience fades fast for you.

Date: Thursday, September 18th, 2014 09:38 am (UTC)
azurelunatic: Polished piece of rainbow fluorite (huggy rock)
From: [personal profile] azurelunatic
That sounds pretty terrible, and I'm so glad there was someone on hand to hug you.

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