There was nothing wrong with the plan. It was a good plan. Because I didn't want to try to do a 3.5 hour drive after a long tiring week at work, I intended to go on the train. I left work early, drove home, grabbed a bite to eat and threw some clothes into a small suitcase and set off for the station in Machynlleth. G had initially intended to come, but had then decided he was too busy. I arrived at the station in good time to find that the ticket office was closed. This turned out to be a good thing in the end as it meant I hadn't bought a ticket before trying to travel.
According to the display screen, the train was running 12 minutes late. This was a little worrying because I only had 20 minutes to make the connection in Shrewsbury. However, I reckoned I could still do it. Shrewsbury is not a big station; it should only take about 5 minutes to change platform to find the Cardiff train.
Eventually the train turned up over 20 minutes late. It was also totally packed with students from Aberystwyth going home for the weekend. Doh! How could I have forgotten that? Not that that would have mattered; there were a few seats left. I could have squeezed in. But was I going to gamble on the train making up enough time to allow me to catch my connecting train to Cardiff? I dithered on the platform. It was cold. If I missed the connection, I would have 2 hours to wait for the next and wouldn't arrive in Cardiff until midnight.
I considered this prospect.
And then I turned and walked back over the bridge to the carpark to phone G and our daughter A to tell them that I wouldn't be going to Cardiff after all.
The moral of this tale is that if I try this trip again (which I would like to do because I do want to attend the tutorials if I can) I must take the whole afternoon off and go for the 4:00 pm train not the 6:00 pm one. That way I can still get to Cardiff at a reasonable time, even if I miss the connection.
So I have spent the day restfully, doing not very much apart from reading rasfc and LJ, trotting into town to buy the local paper, a new Pyrex dish, a toothbrush holder and soap dish for the bathroom and a garlic press. I also watched last Monday's episode of Life on Mars the drama series about the policeman in a coma after an accident in the present who finds himself back in 1973 where policing is rather different to policing now. Despite the premise, it isn't SF but I'm enjoying it, especially as it's set in the Manchester where I grew up.