I don’t often commute to London. We have an office in the BMA building and I go up there perhaps 3 or 4 times a month. I tend to watch a film or some TV on my iPhone to lessen the burden of the commute.
However on Sunday I took M’laddo for what was only his third of fourth trip on a train (4 if you include the ill fated Walsingham Light Railway Disaster). As it was Sunday the train wasn’t the usual cattle truck, there were actually seats and we could sit next to one another. Hurray! The boy was pretty chatty and kept looking out of the window and asking me what he could see and I was more than happy to oblige. We had a grand old time but I did notice we were getting askance looks from all the other train dwellers by the time we pulled into St Pancreas.
I think this might be down the the fact we were having a conversation and there are still a lot of people that think whilst it’s okay for them to shout down their mobile phone to someone, kids should be seen and not heard in public. Or maybe it was because I was in what I mentally think of as my “Mr Tumble” persona. Not that I dress up and act like a moron (Justin is very good at that), but I do like to engage our son at a level he can connect with. So if he asks me what that is, pointing at a crane, I’ll tell him it’s a crane, ask him what colour it is and then if he can remember any stories we’ve read with a crane in. I’ve come to the conclusion that most parents are happy to do this at home but don’t tend to in public places that aren’t specifically child designated areas.
So I ignored the looks and we carried on having a grand old time. Even when we got on the tube and some miserable middle aged man dived past us for the only remaining seat and we had to squat down for 5 stops, we were still having fun. In fact when M’laddo asked me why we couldn’t sit down, I was honest and told him the man had taken the last seat so we had to stand up. It must have been the most comfortable seat in the world because even hearing me say that loudly didn’t convince him to free up the seat for a 3 year old.