The 5:14pm Laverton train was entertaining. The driver engaged with his cargo. As we pulled out of Flinders Street Station he greeted us and then said he wanted to acknowledge three very special groups of people travelling with us today.
"Firstly, I'd like to acknowledge all those people who gave up their seat to someone who really needed it. The second very special group I want to acknowledge is those who can actually hear what I'm saying. It means you haven't got your headphones on and turned up to eleven, which also means you're not driving everyone else nuts with [insert beat box sounds here] bleeding out of your headphones. And the third group I really want to acknowledge is those who are speaking on their mobile phone very softly. You're all outstanding people.
"I also wanted to let you know we are running a bit late, due to the tardy arrival of this train to Flinders Street. I'll do my best to make up time and get you home, as long as you're going anywhere on the Laverton Line, except South Kensington, where we're not stopping. If you're not going to any of these places, you're on the wrong train and I can't really help you! You should get off at the earliest opportunity."
As we pulled out of North Melbourne station, the train slowed right down. The driver was back.
"Good afternoon again, ladies and gentlemen. Very sorry to bother you again. I think the scenery we're now passing through is really worth having a look at - you know, under the freeway - lovely, the dirty old creek - it's so picturesque I decided to slow right down to give you a chance to take it in."
Some of us laughed.
He explained the train ahead of him was travelling very slowly, so he had no choice but to also drive slowly.
At various points, he also advertised a new bus service (the 901) running from Broadmeadows Station to the airport every 15 minutes and apologised for interrupting our reading.
I like this driver and hope he brings me home again soon.