You're waiting for a train

I’m sitting at the train station, slightly too early, making me the only person here. A train rolls in, it’s destination opposite to mine, but it’ll be back soon enough. People disembark and quickly leave. Soon I’m alone again.

People, as a general rule, get through their day by planning. Little minute to minute plans are made, always getting adjusted to meet the situation. Food spills, roadworks, poor timing; we wrap these into our plans and adjust on the fly. We can do this because, for most of our plans, we can anticipate the outcome. Leave late in the morning, you’ll arrive late for work. Go to bed late, you’ll be tired in the morning. So what do we do when something is so far beyond our normal routine that plans just can’t be made? Like light striking a prism and dissolving into infinite waves of colour, so too are the results of our choices when no outcome can be determined.

I’m now on the train. The destination is less a place and more an event. The destination is Glasgow, but the event is much bigger. For the first time in my life I’m about to meet a brother and sister that I never knew I had. I am terrified and elated. I simply don’t have the vocabulary to express my thoughts in anything close to understandable.

I’m a result of a first marriage, and when that marriage ended so did my communication with the paternal line. My awareness of that side became very sparse.

I’m standing outside our pre-arranged meeting spot, more nervous than ever. I worry that I won’t recognise them, having only seen photos online. I tell myself that it’s time to act like an adult, and head inside. Scanning faces as I approach the bar I think I see them everywhere at once. Reaching the bar, I order a beer. From text correspondence I’ve already established that they are here, so I send a text, “I’m at the bar”. There are lots of little cubbyholes in here, hiding at least one half of every group, so I move to get a better vantage point. There they are.

I’ve spoken to them both over recent days and have been very eager for this meeting to take place. I’m happy to say that they both exceeded all hopes. After a slow start of awkward conversation, this gave way to a more relaxed atmosphere. Perhaps next time though, and this is warning only to myself, a few less beers would be advisable

It’s 2am, raining lightly, and the streets are quiet. Once again I’m alone with my thoughts. The events of the past few hours have been exhilarating, and I’m very happy about the progress made. 


Mook says: