Well we have a new Tory/Liberal government and Cameron’s comment about giving Boris “superpowers” has reminded us that when he was running for Mayor he made a few anti-Union statements, specifically against RMT but anything he does to their members he will do to all Tube staff. No doubt he will be more than enthusiastic about complying with restricting public sector employee pay rises to 0% but my bigger concern is there have been mutterings about closing entry to our current pension scheme and the concern is that eventually there will be insufficient funds coming in to pay all those drawing out. If ever Boris wanted a strike that would close down London for a whole week that’s the one to go for. Step outside, Posh Boy.
On Monday night I came back from Epp, went over the points half a mile or so W of Les, changed ends and waited for the last Epp train to go through before forming the last Hai of the night. While I was sat waiting some little scrote graffitied the back two cars of the train. This “main line shunt” move happens every night except Sundays so obviously the local spray can jockeys know it and this is not the first time it has happened to me while doing this particular shift. Last year I got three unofficial paint jobs in the space of a month and the cleaning crew at Hai depot were starting to regard me as a graffiti Jonah but this is my first one this year.
We don’t get it much in the winter and it certainly is more frequent during school holidays, no surprises there. At least this time they restricted themselves to the side of the train, once they covered the windows at the front and I had to drive into the depot with my leg stretched out across the cab to hold the front “M” door open. With the new timetable I thought that they’d run the last Hai through the pipe rather than contiinue the main line shunt but I checked last night and sure enough it’s still there. Obviously the suits who write timetables up in their ivory tower at 55 Broadway don’t get to see at the cleaning bills.
When you take a train into a depot one of the shunters calls you to let you know where to leave your train. I asked him if he’d been told about the graffiti and he said he had which was why he was sending me over in the direction of the “Acid Sheds”. Something in the way he said it sounded delightfully gruesome……..