Having been in London for a while now, you tend to forget how outrageously expensive things here are.
However, I got reminded one evening at a tube station.
Apparently from out of town because they didn’t have Oyster cards, a silver-haired elderly couple tried to get tickets at the Covent Garden tube station.
The husband squinted his eyes and studied the price chart and said to his wife, “Do you have change? We need change to buy tickets but I don’t have any.”
(Typical men. That’s what my dad used to always say to my mom when buses used to accept only cash.)
The old lady opens her purse. “How much is it?”
“Four quid each.”
“FOUR QUID?!” The wife squeaks, shaking her thin pale arms, brandishing her purse.
The husband, although a wrinkly old grandpa now, is still pretty much the guy’s guy: hands in his pockets, he squints at the chart again, “Yep, that’s what it says. Four quid.”
“FOUR QUID?!?! THAT CAN’T BE!!!” The wife pushes her way to the front of the chart.
There was apparently a youngster who was (seemingly reluctantly) taking them around and who, for reasons unknown, just shrugged “Yep, that’s the way it is.” instead of getting them an Oyster card each, which would effectively cut the cost of their journey in less than half.
As I went through the gates, the old lady was rummaging through her purse, still shaking her head repeating “THAT CAN’T BE! THAT CAN’T BE!” as the old man and the youngster stood by nonchalantly with their hands in their pockets, a mirror image of each other.
I was left reminded of three things:
1. How expensive transportation costs are here (both in London and in the UK in general)
2. Guys, no matter how young or old they get, will always be guys
3. Girls will continue to shriek about this and that ;)