Essentials of travel – a keep cup and make-up bag

I’m on the train to Englandshire  and have the real pleasure of sharing space with a group of young women heading to Newcastle for a ‘hen night’. They are young (early twenties at the most) and had travelled very little, particularly by train. They are bemused that their phones know where they were; they are recounting advice from their Grannies about not drinking too much and are generally good company.

We got into conversation (not that I never need an excuse) because one of them was showing another the contents of her make-up bag. It matches her suitcase so she is gorgeous before she ever starts on the make-up process. I took a photo of it with my keep cup for perspective, that is size perspective and approach-to-travelling perspective. My suitcase for a week’s holiday is not much bigger than her wonderful make-up bag!


Free coffee – well, free to me

My first train south today was a VirginTrains one. As soon as the catering bar opened I was there with my Keep Cup looking for coffee. I often have problems wanting to use my travel cup and I take up the cudgels in defence of sustainability each time. Not only did I have no problem today, but my coffee was free. I questioned the staff member about this and she confirmed that it was free because I brought my own cup and she thinks that ‘that rocks’. If this is company policy, it should be broadcast but it was just this young woman’s policy – her contribution to saving the planet.

I asked her if I could tweet about it, or if that would get her in trouble. That would be fine, she assured me. So I did. Unsurprisingly @VirginTrains replied quickly asking what service I was on. Again I checked with my coffee benefactor if I could divulge this detail and she agreed. She didn’t seem in the least concerned about any consequence to her giving away the company’s coffee. On tweeting the train details and nice words about the onboard team, I got the following response from @VirginTrains:

@moiradunworth We don’t offer refills with these cups/mugs but it’s great to hear Una was on top form this afternoon. Hope you enjoyed your coffee! ^CB

Is it just me or is that young woman in line for a reprimand? She was still unconcerned. I would love to know the inside story of this kind of thing. Maybe Virgin really is the great employer that the team said it is.