Train Stories – Ginger?

Have you ever been sitting there minding your own business and someone just stares at you constantly?

The 1753 from Ednburgh Haymarket heading back to Glasgow and he was on when I boarded. 

I noticed him as I walked from the front of the carriage towards the back to find an empty seat.

There was no eye contact.   

He’s sitting on the opposite aisle seat about 3 rows back. 

I’m facing backwards,  typing into my phone. He’s facing forward looking right at me. 

I’d started putting together a poem,  a humorous piece of romantic nonsense about all the things you hate about your partner but you’d miss if she was gone. 

Those irritating phrases she uses, the lack of urgency when you’re in a hurry,  her hair blocking the shower and you cleaning it out cod she doesn’t like doing that. 

You know the kind of thing. 

You may have noticed that I never mentioned the old toilet seat cliche?   I mean does any woman or man actually find that annoying when the seat is up or down?


Just put it down or lift it up and get on with your very fortunate life and consider yourself lucky that it’s the only thing you’ve got to waste time moaning about!

Now as I write this I can feel his stare. 

Over the course of writing this I’ve looked up 3 times and our eyes have met. 

On the third occasion he was already staring when I looked up so I maintained contact for a moment. 

At this point, the social convention is that the person caught looking at someone else turns away.  

If they don’t and the person being observed holds their eye for a moment It’s a challenge … A silent who-the-fuck-are-you-looking-at?

The polite thing is to look away and avoid the confrontation. 

But not this guy. 

He held my eyes until I looked away. 

I looked up again a few seconds letter to see if he had relented and turned his focus elsewhere but he was still staring. 

That’s just weird. 

He’s about 50,  light gingery grey hair about 3 inches long hanging to his eyebrows and a grey beard.  His face is postmarked and unshaven. He looks ruddy skinned as if he has spend a lot of time in the sun or in a bar. 

He looks dated,  his hairstyle is dated, his tan jacket looks as if it’s seen better days.  He’s wearing jeans black motorcycle boots. 

Just thought I’d give you that description officer in case he gets off at my stop and I’m never seen again!  

He’s still staring .. Seriously. 

I am not joking. 

I laughed a little as I wrote that about the police officer and looked up for a moment and he is focussed on me  

Should I walk over and ask him what he wants?  If he has a problem?  Or leave it be?

Why is he staring anyway?

The only other time I’ve ever felt threatened by another guys stare was when I was in a gay bar in Glasgow with a friend of mine and her gay friends. 

These two guys were staring constantly and I felt like a piece of meat!!

I wondered if that’s how it is for girls when guys are staring at them in a bar?

Then one of the guys came over and started a conversation with me .. I was polite but couldn’t get out of there fast enough!

That was the no-kidding point and I was swimming in the wrong pool.   

Exit stage left pronto. 

When I met my friend the following week she laughed and said  that I should take it as a compliment as at least someone found me attractive. 

Should I take this as a compliment too?

I don’t think so. 

This is weird and making me a little anxious, even the big transvestite guy doesn’t stare like this. 

The old flight or fight reaction is starting to kick in,  I can feel the adrenaline surge and I’m not about to run from anyone. 

Bring it on Ginger. 


ps for the record this is true and happening as we speak. The train is currently at Shotts and the guy is still staring. 

I’m getting angrier by the minute. 

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