Trains from Gatwick to Reading were not running due to a tree on the tracks, passengers were advised to travel via Clapham Junction, the announcement said. It sounded like the tree would be there for quite a while.
I travelled together with a clergyman in his seventies who as a young boy felt attracted by the singing in church. To him, to say mass was a performance, and he loved it. Practising rituals does advance spirituality, he said.
The next day, in a second-hand bookstore in Falmouth, I bought Alan Bennett's „Four Stories“, my first book by this author. One of the stories happened to be about a memorial service and once again I was told that what is taking place in church is a performance: „Whatever else it is“, he had told the Board, „a congregation is first and foremost an audience. And I am the stand-up. I must win them over.“ It was so obvious that I could not stop wondering that I had never thought of it.
In Guildford, the train to Gatwick filled up. A large group of young men, all sporting the same T-shirt and beer cans stormed the until then quiet wagon I was in. Are you some sort of club? I asked the guy sitting next to me. A stag party, the guy over there gets married and so we're going to a beer festival in Cologne. When's your flight? I inquired. At two ten, with Easyjet. Are you on the same flight? Fortunately not, I replied. He and his colleague grinned.