I liked John, the train manager. Whether through boredom or sheer playfulness, he commented on each station we approached. ‘Welcome to the county town of Somerset and the tantalizing station we know as Taunton,’ he said. Tiverton Parkway was described as ‘titillating’; Exeter St Davids: ‘exciting’ and Newton Abbot apparently has a ‘naughty little station.’ There was a lovely ripple of laughter through the carriage whenever his voice came over the speaker.
As we were departing, he came on again and said: ‘thank you for journeying with us through the South West where the wheels of friendship travel with you.’