Monday, 12 May 2008

Excuse me

It was a hot day today on the trains.

I sat in one of the only available seats; a squishy one in between two fat, hairy commuters. OK, they weren't actually fat and hairy but they might well have been given the comfort levels I was experiencing.

At Stratford a few passengers got out and I took advantage of a space on a seat for two, which affords much more comfort than the three-seater.

As passengers got off, new passengers got on, and a very pregnancy lady sat where I had been sitting. When I say very pregnant I would estimate she was about seven months pregnant.

She was the second pregnant woman in our bit of the carriage, and I thought it odd that, on a hot day, neither were taking advantage of the free upgrade to first class that can be enjoyed by all expectant mothers.

I looked at the woman in front of me. It really was unfair to expect her to sit in our hot and crowded carriage. She was no spring chicken and I found myself thinking she was very brave having a child at her age. I thought I was old when I had my children but she looked at least fifteen years older than I'd been, pushing the boundaries of the physically possible. I wondered if she was an IVF mum. In any event I decided she needed to know about her free upgrade.

I leaned forward to talk her. "Are you pregnant?" I asked.

"No. Why?" she replied.

I panicked. "Er only there's a lady over there who's pregnant and I'm wondering whether she knows she can travel first class with a free upgrade." but it was too late. The damage had been done.

"It'd be a miracle if I was pregnant. I'm 62, nearly 63."

I cringed inwardly and asked lamely "You certainly don't look it....what's your secret."

"I'm a bit fat. My daughter's 40 you know."

I resolved never to speak to another pregnant woman offering help or advice unless I'd seen incontrovertible evidence that bump was baby.


R N B said...

Even famous people have made similar mistakes - on TV

R N B said...

Excuse me ...