Train Stories – Vamp?

They look like grown up school girls.

The bunch of mums sitting on the 8:09 from Coatbridge Sunnyside heading towards
Edinburgh.

They were already aboard when I took the last seat amongst them on the busy train heading east.

The aren’t normally on this train but that may be because the other route to Edinburgh is closed for 6 weeks. 

Or possibly they are heading through for a course for the day as some of the women are wearing name badges adorned with the logo of a particular building society. 

Building Societies? Do you still get them? Coincidentally this one was taken over by the bank I’m working for at the moment.    

There seems to be two groups within the group. 

The first wear navy trousers and multicoloured blouses, small painted dashes of red white and blue almost cover a dark background. 

The second wear dark navy skirts, matching sweaters with red bands at the waist, collar and cuffs. 

The former group, sitting closer, seem the elder, late 40s, mumsie, practical hair-styles, the merest hint of makeup.    

Each of them with yellow gold wedding rings, showing their marriage haslasted as no one buys yellow gold wedding rings these days.

The three women in my 4 seat booth speak incessantly, all at the same time, but somehow the conversations seem to retain their thread and there is lots of laughter dotted with occasional shrieks. 

Not that I’m listening!

The sweaters sitting across the aisle are younger, early to mid 30s, over dyed black or blonde hair, makeup not plastered but heavy enough to be obvious.   

One girl in particular, her scarlet lips are in stark contrast with her pale face, highlighted cheeks and black hair. 


She’s like a vamp from an 80s music video, more Bauhaus than Robert Palmer. 

It’s a deliberate look and with her high cheekbones she carries it well.

She’s sitting diagonally opposite me across the aisle, looking back as I face forward.

At this moment, she’s staring ahead, looking sullen, her lips pouting as the conversation of the younger women carries on around her. 

Suddenly, she smiles and her face lights up, bursting into life as she contributes her piece, her bright eyes flashing between one colleague and another, then she laughs and they all laugh with her. 

She looks my way for a moment, in that moment it’s as if she’s almost apologising, embarrassed by the laughter she caused.

I smile because I was already smiling inside, our eyes meet for an instant and she’s gone.

That laugh kinda killed the vampish look, the lines on her eyes showingher more as early 40s than late 30s. 

A warm 40s than a cool 30s suits me anytime! 🙂




Love this song from Bauhaus back in the day .. The rest of them were pretty bad even their cover of Ziggy Startdust was dreadful, pretentiousdirge ..  Aah but we were young!


Do you remember their singer Pete Murphy in the Maxwell tape ads.   Such a handsomely chiselled face. 

Tapes, I remember as a kid, recording the charts off the radio on a Sunday night and trying not to catch the ads or the DJ’s cheesy voice!



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