I blog to you this morning live from the Piccadilly Line, London.
It is not a smooth experience. Clearly the train driver is experiencing a certain reluctance at his compulsion to work on the Saturday before Easter. Either he is grouchy, or impatient, or he wants to bring a little extra excitement to his life and ours. Whatever his motivation, we have covered the distance between Hounslow and Osterley with the swiftness, if not the comfort, of the winged messenger himself.
And every now and then the train stops and the electronic budgies twitter and a grave lady reminds everyone to Mind The Gap.
There must be five languages rattling on in my part of the carriage alone, a festive Saturday morning Babel hurtling towards Boston Manor at a rate of knots.
There is a uniform, though. Everyone wears jeans, those indigo talismans against the unseasonable temperatures. We rattle past allotment gardens and the little housetops, colleges and car parks, satellites and suburbia.
I have 12 stations to pass before I change for Westminster and the Banqueting House; and the enforced sit-down is rather novel. Already, the train is at standing room only and filled with murmurs of happy anticipation. Everyman has his day’s itinerary, and each of ours is different.
Here we sit, very British, together yet apart, thrown from side to side at the whim of our gung-ho guide through the underworld.