Sunday, September 01, 2013

Homeward Bound

I'm sittin' in the railway station, got a ticket for my destination.

Anyone who knows anything about Simon and Garfunkel will recognize those words as the opening of Homeward Bound. (Quite possibly my favourite S&G song)

And, anyone who knows anything about Janice Mills will know that Paul Simon and his partnership with Art Garfunkel rank at the top of my favourite music.

So, imagine, if you will...

The year is 2000. I've just completed a three week tour of Europe and am now in England meeting up with my Grammie in Manchester who is serendipitously also in England. I've decided to take the train to Liverpool to see the birthplace of the Beatles.


The train inexplicably stops. There is a garbled message on the loudspeaker and everyone starts disembarking. I wasn't sure what was going on, but another passenger informed me we had to switch trains. I gathered my belongings and stepped off with the others. We had to wait a good 20 minutes to half an hour for the next train to arrive.

In the meantime, we all waited. There was not a lot to this train station, just a platform for waiting. Actually, there was supposed to be something else at this train station that would have caught my attention, had I seen it. But, it was missing. Literally...it had been stolen recently. (I didn't realize this until I returned to Canada and heard about it in the news) The commemorative plaque claiming that Paul Simon wrote Homeward Bound at this very train station. Can you believe it? I sure couldn't!

It was while we were waiting that I discovered this amazing tidbit. The gentleman next to me commented "Of all the stations to be stuck at, of course it would be Widnes. There's not even a toilet here. No wonder Paul Simon wrote Homeward Bound here." [insert record scratch sound effect here] I was astounded at his casual comments and immediately demanded more information. Unfortunately, it was just as the train was pulling in and my camera was packed away in my bag.

Some stories just deserve retelling and this is certainly one of them. Hope you've enjoyed my tale.

2 comments:

Carmi Levy said...

I've got chills thinking about how many stars had to align to put you in that place at that time. Your writing put us there on the platform wih you. Nothing short of magical, Janice!

Greene family said...

Wow, that is amazing! I love those songs, I grew up listening to them.