What Happens When You Speak To People On The Tube

By Londonist Last edited 16 months ago
What Happens When You Speak To People On The Tube

Shock! Horror! Amy Dicketts of Commute Blog talks to people *on the tube*. Here's who she get into conversation with on one day...

First up was a guy who definitely wins the dad of the year award for naming his children as his greatest triumph in life. Despite their cheeky ways, he couldn’t think of anyone he was more proud of. You just know he's the guy rocking matching Halloween outfits with his kids on the trick-or-treat rounds.

"What's been your greatest triumph in life?" "My children. One's 10 and one's two, one's good and one's naughty. But they both just make me proud because they're mine."

Although this pregnant women wasn’t yet a parent, she was already thinking about everything she hoped for for her child, and her answers were so heart-warming. Her stories about trying to get a seat on the tube were markedly less positive. Look out for the Baby on Board badges, people!

"How do you find it trying to get a seat on the tube?" "Sometimes people don't notice I'm pregnant and it's really hard to ask someone to stand up for you — maybe I'll find it easier when I get bigger!" "What are your hopes for your child?" "I just want them to be happy. It's hard to summarise actually. I want them to have a happy life, and to have everything they need."

Another person feeling the familial love was this girl, who was lucky enough to have not one, but two Spanish grandmothers who had travelled all the way from her home country just to see how she was settling into life in the Big Smoke. While they were as different as north and south London, they both clearly had a lot of love for their adventurous granddaughter.

"These are both my grandmothers. I've been living in London for six months so they came on their own from Spain to visit me. They are completely different. This one is really creative in everything she does, but the other one has to have everything perfect. Her bag always has to match — everything! But they are both amazing."

Speaking of adventure, this girl had come all the way from New Zealand for a slice of London life. If you ever find yourself recently dumped and on the tube (most likely weeping behind an old copy of The Metro) avoid this happy couple at all costs. Honestly, you’re unlikely to find two people more in love than this pair. And she’s killed a possum, so she’s not to be messed with.  

"We met through a mutual friend. We just sort of came together naturally. It was never awkward. It's really nice." "What's your favourite thing about each other?" "Everything!" "Her smile lights up my day. And she once killed a possum."

Even the tube signs were getting in on the feel-good vibe in London this month. This uplifting quote was spotted at Clapham North station. There’s nothing quite like it for making a Monday morning feel less hideous.

Don’t worry, we haven’t all lost our minds. This girl said what many have been thinking.

"I've only been on the tube twice. I hate it! There are all the maps, and it's so hot. It's just like — oh my god.

By Amy Dicketts of Commute Blog

Last Updated 18 October 2016

Richard Daniels

Up until 2012 I regularly commuted on the Piccadilly Line from Wood Green into London. Sometimes there was a tube driver who would read out thoughts for the day mainly from classical writers such as Tolstoy or Coleridge. It made my day to get on his train. Perhaps he's taken over the station at Clapham North. He always used to mention if he saw pregnant women getting on the train in his mirrors and explain to the people in carriage no. ... to make a seat etc. It's was always nice to hear him and to know that there was somebody somewhere driving the tube that didn't just read out the messages he had to like a recording.

Clyde Kent

What a delightfully positive article! Thank you very much!

Sam

On a two week trip last year we used the Tube to go everywhere. We have very limited public transportation in Minnesota so we thought it was magical! We figured it out quickly, though a few friendly Londoners answered a directional question now and then. This was a good story about how positive commuting can be.

Deebo

Ain't that DJ Karnage from Roll Deep? London grime royalty there.