Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog)

Describe the chaos created at the Waterloo Station. (Chapter 5)


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When they arrive at Waterloo Station, none of the conductors there know which train they should take. When one conductor tells them that nobody knows where the trains are supposed to go, they give him a half-crown bribe and luckily end up heading towards Kingston, disembarking when they reach the river.

"So we went to the high-level platform, and saw the engine-driver, and asked

him if he was going to Kingston. He said he couldn’t say for certain of course, but that he rather thought he was. Anyhow, if he wasn’t the 11.5 for Kingston, he said he was pretty confident he was the 9.32 for Virginia Water, or the 10 a.m. express for the Isle of Wight, or somewhere in that direction, and we

should all know when we got there. We slipped half-a-crown into his hand, and begged him to be the 11.5 for Kingston.

“Nobody will ever know, on this line,” we said, “what you are, or where you’re going. You know the way, you slip off quietly and go to Kingston.”

“Well, I don’t know, gents,” replied the noble fellow, “but I suppose some train’s got to go to Kingston; and I’ll do it. Gimme the half-crown.”

We later find out that the train was actually a mail train, and that the employees at Waterloo Station had spent hours looking for it after they'd gone.


Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog)