My Travels

Christine Law

© Copyright 2022 by Christine Law

Photo by Omar Prestwich on Unsplash
                                Photo by Omar Prestwich on Unsplash

Its funny how life plans out? I can remember traveling to Switzerland, flowers
growing in the streets of Lucerne along the pavements, with snow on the mountains. At twenty- two
to be in such a climate didnít seem real. On the trip there were many interesting people to talk to.
Trying to hide my shyness I tried to be friendly to everyone on the coach.

 Unfortunately, there was one lady in her late forties Anita, she was a nurse so was her friend. The
friend was very friendly and I found it easy to talk to her.

Anita had to be the centre of attention talking about a courier who was decent and polite, with

a weight problem. She put sweet papers in a box on my seat. Others tried to ignore Anita.

Divorced she was soon making a play for some married men on the tour who had come to play golf,

leaving their wives at home.

One couple husband and wife were really upset when Anita and her friend came out of the

entrance, of a hypermarket the wrong way drunk, blaming the coach for moving. I thought the best

thing to do was speak with others and ignore what was happening with Anita. I can only assume that

she was better as a nurse than a travel companion. Forty years on I can still remember the incident

and how people were afraid to voice their feelings rather make a bad situation worse. Over the years

Iíve thought about the situation. Maybe because it was one of my first holidayís abroad. Was Anita

behaving the way, she did because she felt inadequate? The only way to win was by making others

look small.

The situation with Anita did not put me off traveling. One of my fears being water having had a

bad experience as a child seeing a slide at a swimming pool clambering up it, not realising at eight

years of age where I would end up in the deep end of the pool. My parents had comforted me at

the time. Now I paddle in the water and sit on the beach. At one stage I even swam with floats in my

teens at school. Aeroplanes donít scare me although traveling to Spain a few years ago to hear my

ears pop, it still came as a shock as the plane travelled upward. The sensation does not last long and

there is often a film to watch on board or I find the time to sleep.

One of my biggest phobias that Iím still trying very hard to overcome and seeing these great

objects makes my spine tingle. In fact, I will travel around London trying to dodge them. That fear

being escalators. As a child I saw an old fellow fall down one complete with umbrella. Over the years

at underground exits and railway stations I look for a route to dodge these monsters. Iíve tried not

to let it become an obsession. It hasnít been easy if carrying a suitcase when lifts are the over side

of the platform.

Over the years getting myself into a sweat. When many thousands use escalators every day.

The strange thing is Iím not afraid to walk up a stationary escalator. I can travel in a plane;

Iíve learnt over the years to walk the width of a motorway bridge seeing the traffic below. Without

crumbling in a heap on the floor. So, is their hope for me and the iron monsters with moving teeth?

A tv programme was aired recently about incidents with escalators in the United Kingdom,

China, Japan and U.S.A. Showing how easy it is for clothing to become trapped and an incident

where a baby was rescued after the buggy fell on the moving stairs. The child had rocked towards

the machine not realising the danger they were in. The mother had been in a shop. Accidents with

these machines are kept very low key by the media.

Acceptance being that nothing cannot be without peril if you travel whether by train, ship plane

or public transport it comes at a risk to get from a to b. One has to face the world rather than

become a hermit. Itís a bit like taking the first steps to use the internet. The path becomes easier the

more you learn about the modern world.

Maybe one day I will rise above myself conquer this fear. Who knows what the future holds?

with the latest technology with robots replacing humans at some future date, there will be less staff

at airports ferry terminals and train stations already a lot of the smaller stations seem to man

themselves. This has made my route difficult when working as a Live in Carer having to find the best

route to travel. Only time will tell with so many cut backs. Which is most important health and

safety or cost cutting? Isnít life about making things easier for the traveller? There are still a lot of

questions to be answered for and against the problem.

By approaching the issue, I try to give insight to others who may or may not see the difficulty as

so many are keen to avoid the problem and carry on with their lives. Not many over the years have

stopped to give support. Writing this down in essay form and giving facts I hope will give myself and

others the confidence to pursue the area. The figures show as follows in the U.S.A escalators kill

about thirty people injuring 17.000 people each year. United Kingdom the figures arenít as great.

Although there is now a document LEIA accident statistic most are classed as being minor.

The public still needs to be made more aware of the dangers of these machines. Until it happens to

you or one of your family no one can imagine the fright and danger that is involved. There are still

people who have been known to slide down the moving machines. I can only say beware of the

danger put more posters up at entrances and near these machines that are seen and read.

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