Last week saw me "out and about" for the first time this year, and that involves travel... trains, planes and automobiles.
And when I’m out and about, I am a keen observer of human behaviour (of course... and I’m sure you are too).
What particularly intrigued me this time happened on one train journey to Aberdeen. The carriage was about half full, and a mix of airline style seats, and double seats with tables (as we know, those are much sought-after!). Many of the airline seats meant that passengers were facing backwards -ie not in the direction of travel... and like most people, I prefer to be facing forwards. And to add to the evident discomfort of most passengers, the sun, being low in the sky at this time of year, was shining right into the carriage, and most people were desperately trying to shield their eyes from the tortuous glare!
Then, at one station, a number of people got off, leaving several of the “double seats” (ie 4 seats around a table) free. The train pulled away again. The next stop wasn’t to be for some time. But no one moved. No one got out of their uncomfortable position (facing the wrong way, with sun in eyes, and with no space or a table to relax at). Interesting. Were they all too afraid?
So, after several minutes, I got up, smiled, moved the few paces across the aisle, and sat down to enjoy the comfort of the rest of the journey, facing forward, able to read in comfort and do a bit of work. And I could tell that most of the other passengers were thinking “I wish I had done that”. Instead, they had got comfortable in their discomfort, and did nothing.