You could always count on Coach B. Wherever Virgin trains
ran to, one coach was set aside for the smokers
. It was always Coach B.
Even if you didn't want to smoke, this coach was the place to go and meet decent people
. OK, so people do
occasionaly chat to strangers
on trains, but this occurs much more frequently if you outwardly appear to share a vice
The ticket inspector would show his face less often, or would rush through the smog at a rate of knots, trying to save himself. Random people might offer you a Stella and a Benson as a cue to swap stories. Of course, this was the only place to be if you are the type to drink spesh or White Lightning in public. Here you could hold court and recount your stories of ill treatment by the polis or the social. Just got out of prison in brum? Well Coach B is probably your ride back to Manchester.
Now coach B has dissapeared. Smokers have to resort to a sneaky fag in between compartments. Open the window, get a light, get your fill. You might be risking righteous indignation from non-smoking fellow travellers, but probably not from train staff. I can't blame the ticket inspector for turning a blind eye to the sneaky. You'd have to pay me a lot of money to place myself between an addict and their nicotine. But now your illicit smoke blows through the doors to First Class, making them cough and tut.