Friday 5 July 2013

An incident at Newcastle station (It's not what you think)

Haven't you always wanted to visit the fine city of Newcastle upon Tyne?

Human cousin number one goes to the University there and number two maybe hopes to. The city boasts fine architecture, old and new, and has a reputation as for great night life and a local accent almost as incomprehensible as Aberdeen's Doric. As my friends over the Pond would say, what's not to like?

Now regular readers of this blog will know that on the way to Nottingham* we always change trains at Edinburgh, where I get a chance to stretch my legs in Princes Gardens and Calton Hill and sometimes meet up with my wiry pal Horatio.

It would be perfectly possible to stop and change trains at Newcastle instead. Wouldn't that be fun? I don't care that there are no green spaces conveniently near the railway station. I want to explore the fine Victorian city streets then cross the famous tilting bridge and visit the spectacular Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art.

Well on Wednesday, as the train was halted in Newcastle station and lots of passengers were disembarking, it just so happened that my collar and lead sort of 'fell off'. Yes really, a gentle backward motion on my part, and suddenly, freedom!

Now Gail is always going on about the importance of seizing the moment.

So I ran past all the suitcases, out of the train door, and, joyful at the prospect of seeing this fine northeastern city, sprinted for the station exit. You could see Gail was excited too, dashing down the platform after me, yelling my name and waving her arms. Gosh, she too was so clearly thrilled at the thought of a night out in Newcastle that she seemed to have jumped off the train leaving all her bags behind. Who knew my owner had such a carefree spirit? The train staff were about to shut the doors and Gail was shouting at them quite a lot as she ran, dodging our fellow passengers.

Well I did pause a moment to let her catch up and, can you believe it, she scooped me up in her arms and jumped right back on the train, about five carriages down from where we were originally seated.

Seconds later, the train pulled out of the station.

Held tight against Gail's chest as she walked down the train corridor, I could hear her heart pounding faster and louder than usual.

And that was my visit to Newcastle upon Tyne.
In my favourite chair in Nottingham. Butter wouldn't melt....

PS from Gail: The good news is that the expensive 'stopper upper' worked and we at least had an emissions free train ride. Thank you, by the way, for your suggestions for cheaper options.

*For the benefit of any train geeks out there, our full route is the East Coast line from Aberdeen via Edinburgh Waverley to Newark North Gate, then a 20 minute walk across to Newark Castle Station and onto the local East Midlands line to Burton Joyce. We walk one mile from home to the station in Aberdeen and half a mile at the other end to reach the (grand)parental home. 


  1. Oh Bertie, you always have Gail's best interests at heart. A short, fast run, just to get the blood pumping. Well done little mate. No worries, and love, Stella and Rory

  2. Well done, Bertie! Sometimes you just have to take the initiative. Gail probably needed some exercise after sitting on the train that long.

    So glad the stopper upper worked.

    xXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

  3. Holy batman!! I didn't realise Bertie was a wannabe Houdini!! What a panic but I'm glad it worked out fine in the end. Don't worry on the return leg, we'll wait at the arrivals gate in Waverley and stop him! G

  4. You rascal Bertie. I can just imagine Gail scampering along the platform trying to capture you before the train left! Gail has probably aged by 20 years...

  5. OMD Bertie. Are you trying to give Gail a heart attack? Thank God all was OK. Have a fabulous Friday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. oh my word, how very scary for Gail, how very much fun for you :)

  7. Oh Bertie you are an adventuresome lad, our mom would have fainted with fear though if we did that thank goodness Gail caught you

    urban hounds

  8. Oh Bertie, what an adventure!! We are so glad you were feeling better. It must have allowed you to dash so quickly like that at the station! Excellent run I bet!!

  9. Bertie...BAD DOG!!!! You should not do that to Gail EVER AGAIN.

    (Muzzer made us say that.)

    That Said...Teka says "Way to Go Bertie."

    And I think I would need a long nap.

    gussie n teka

  10. That story would have made a GREAT movie Bertie! We can picture Gail now running down the platform after you with her arms flailing in the air.... Good thing she's in shape to do that :)

    We're glad to hear your medicine worked!

    Lily Belle & Muffin

  11. Oh, Bertie. We are torn here on how to reply. On the one hand there is the comical side and on the other hand there is the "Oh my God Gail must have totally freaked out" side. Sounds like you had a great run but perhaps you should stay seated on the way home for fear if you try that move twice in one trip you'll be sent to the dog housefor an extended stay!!

  12. Holy Gwalk A Moley buddy... you took Gail on a WHIRLWIND visit of the Station. She must have been totally THRILLED ... Did she need some of that Magical Stopper Uppper stuffs after THAT experience???

  13. Bertie Bertie Bertie!!!! I wish you could have hear my mom cackle when she read "Gosh, she too was so clearly thrilled at the thought of a night out in Newcastle that she seemed to have jumped off the train leaving all her bags behind. Who knew my owner had such a carefree spirit?"
    Needless to say I expect your tail was doing the tango at the thought of a night in Newcastle.

    Glad your pooper stopper work but I bet you about scared the poop out of Gail taking off like that. One good MOL was enough don't do that again
    Hugs Madi your BFFF

  14. Oh, Bertie. This is not good for Gail's heart. Glad you had a nice train ride though. Now, I must go back and check the comments to find out what this magical stopper upper stuff is.

  15. Okay...It was the expensive stopper upper stuff from the vet. I forgot about that.

  16. Hari Om
    ...really? A gentle backward motion? Bertie Blogdog sit your tail down right now! Yes Newcastle is worth a visit. But by prior arrangement only, okay?? It's a place which needs planning.

    Never mind Gail, I-i-i was the one having palpitations... from laughing. &>>

    Thank you to Gail, also for the train layout; I love travelling by rail and know this route quite well (from last century!!) so was able to picture the trip. How lovely to be able to walk so handily at either end. Have a super stay and looking forward to hearing what capers arise this time. Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xx

  17. Bertie. I would have been very angry with you...Just sayin.

    Bart, Ruby and Otto's mom

  18. Bravo Bertie! Our motto is to always live like someone left the gate open. And HER response to that is double bar gates, screen porches and the dreaded halter/collar combo. It's devilishly difficult to actually break free. Travel is generally in a locked crate or for shorter trips, halter latched to the seat belt. No free roaming Scotties much to our annoyance. SHE even puts a saftey clip parachute cord latch from our leash around her waist. Just cuz Bonnie once tripped her up chasing a dreaded C-A-T and took off across a 4 lane road leash flying in the wind.
    Bonnie and Kenzie, two wee HOT Scotties from Florida

  19. Well, Gail is not that carefree spirit after all, is she? She missed a great trip.

    Mai the Westie

    P.S. My mom is laughing tears.I don`t get it, it`s a sad story.

  20. Heehee, Bertie-

    I do that at the shops all the time. I make a break for it and run into the stores to have a look around. You can't stop a terrier fella from having a look around, right Bertie!


  21. Oh my. OurMoma's heart was beating and her adrenaline was rushing. We know. We could sense it. That'll teach her for waiting so long to catch up on your and Gail's adventures, Bertie.

    We think she needs a cup of tea now. It a wonderful westie mug.

    Jake and Fergi

  22. Oh Bertie, I know that you were just adding some excitement to Gails otherwise hum drum trip!!
    We did hafta laugh at the story though!!


  23. Phew Bertie, you certainly live on the edge. My heart was thumping too as I read about your 'adventure'. If Gail is anything like me, she would have shed a tear or two after it all. BTW Has she recovered, or are the nightmares coming? Talk about a 'whistle stop'...
    Bertie, it's time to calm down dear boy. Humans can only stand so much excitement.
    Glad you are safe though. Please send my love to Gail (and to the more senior humans too)...ok, you can have a cuddle too. :)

  24. We're still snoozing upstairs with dad so we can't express our delight at your thrilling exploit, which means that mom can totally side with Gail as all our heartstopping fugues.

    Once is too much dear boy!!!!

    Joan in lieu of Jake and JH

  25. What a journey. Bet HG was doubly pleased to see you ! Keep strong these trips are so important.

  26. BOL Bertie - you made a great escape just like I did on my last post.... it is fun isn't it!!!????

    Tail Wuggles, Rubie xxx

  27. Oh Bertie you're such an adventurous dog and your fun got spoiled...didn't Gail know you just wanted to check out a new city? Seems wrong, but I guess it's better that you two travel together...who knows what serious mischief could have happened to you on your own...Glad your "stopper" is working and hope you're doing well

  28. Hi Gail! A nice little halter would prevent this from happening again. . .do you have one?

    If not, I have a couple that belonged to Otis the Scottie and you need to measure around the chest (toward waist side). If you can fit either or both, I'd love to send them on to you.

    I hope you have recooped from the runaway by now.

    Cheers and hugs,

    Jo and the Gang

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  30. Bertie,

    As scientific adviser you need to explain Newton's 3rd Law of motion to Gail - for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

    When extreme force was applied at speed towards your rear (indicated by your backward motion) and had no where to go (as Gail had given you a "stopper upper"), then the equal and opposite reaction was for that force to propel you forwards as fast as your little feet could carry you!

    Therefore the train station incident was clearly caused by Gail (as she gave you far too much medicine) and is no reflection on your fine behaviour!


  31. OMG...another post I missed back in the summer.

    This experience must have been so scary.

    After reading this post, my stay-in-pet-carrier-on-trains policy will be strictly enforced with no exceptions. I actually like it better that pet carrier is my safe zone.

    Anyway, we're glad to hear everything turned out fine.

  32. I have only known Bertie for about 2 years I think and had to come read the Great Train Escape. this is hilarious, after the fact and you are super human to jump off and on the trains.. loved this precious memory