02 July 2007

A data protection kind of day

I dread running training courses on data protection, which must be one of the most tedious areas of law known to humankind. But I can do it, and actually make it fairly interesting for the delegates, even perhaps entertaining.

So I finished this evening and set off home in much better time than usual, planning to get tomorrow's presentation polished up on the train home and later in the evening. Was it a surprise to learn that the gods of the railway system had been conspiring against me, and lightning had struck the signalling system at Southall? Not a bit. I couldn't get on the only train that showed any sign of leaving Paddington, packed like a can of sardines, then another was announced, stopping everywhere as far as Reading, and along with several million other people (perhaps I exaggerate) I boarded it. The journey to Reading, 27 minutes on a fast train, took two hours, including a lengthy wait for a platform to become vacant, and most of it not just standing but unable to fall over had I wished to do so. The Rail Regulator reportedly considers this a safer arrangement than having people loose in the carriages, so perhaps I should have felt good about it.

Fortunately, I was able to take a traing from Reading to Didcot - a fast one, 12 minutes - pretty promptly after the first train arrived at its terminus. As for salvaging something from the evening, not much chance of that. I'll have to charge up my computer and work at it on the way to London in the morning.

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