“Meet me underneath the clock simply by Platform Two at Victoria Station” he urged, eyes ablaze with urgency. This was to be our first date and I questioned what he had in thoughts. I arrived at 10.55 am, a couple of minutes early to settle myself, solely to seek out he was already ready, wanting sheepish holding a bunch of crimson roses.
Simply as I started to swoon over the gesture I heard the whistle of the steam prepare shunting into place on the platform. Gently taking my hand he whispered “your champagne breakfast awaits m’woman” and led me to the Pullman eating carriage of The Royal Windsor Steam Specific prepare.
Actuality examine. Okay, that’s the Mills and Boon model. We have been simply going to Windsor for the day to see her Majesty’s citadel and benefit from the historic city of Windsor.
We selected so as to add a little bit of romantic sparkle to an in any other case mundane journey by way of London by travelling on the trendy Pullman model on board a steam prepare destined for this proper royal city.
It is a newish common steam service from London’s Victoria Station that returned to the tracks in 2019 after 50 years.
Our prepare was the Mayflower and I had a chance to take a look at her boiler room earlier than departure. That is the place tons of coal are manually shovelled into the hearth range turning water into steam.
At 383 levels Fahrenheit (195 levels Centigrade) it’s truthful to say it’s sizzling in there. I appeared on the crimson faces of the 2 males who stored all of it going with some awe.
It was far cooler within the carriage as I headed for my plush armchair seat alongside the carpeted, wood-panelled walkway to a desk draped in a white linen desk material. Silver cutlery, champagne flutes for 2, a interval studying lamp and tied again embroidered curtains set the scene of a bygone age or maybe a homicide thriller on the Orient Specific.
Then the whistled blew and we have been off. As we chugged out of Victoria, champagne was served by Peter, donning a black uniform and a large smile (little doubt) beneath a black masks. Then orange juice and low.
Quickly the brunch arrived; Eggs Royale; two muffins topped with smoked salmon topped with poached egg, topped with hollandaise sauce and served with half a grilled tomato.
Breakfast on the tracks whereas listening to the whistle of steam between bites was enjoyable. Although the surroundings throughout that 58-mile journey between Victoria Station London and Windsor was not a lot of a backdrop – what do you say about Barnes and Clapham Junction? – there have been bursts of greenery nearer to Windsor.
It was joyful although to see bystanders, waving excitedly at us with telephones on the prepared snapping pics of the prepare because it whistled by way of their station amid plumes of steam.
What may have made the expertise even higher? In the course of the journey, it occurred to me that I’d have prefer to dine with some background music – something classical would have enhanced that feeling of civilised escapism.
Having fun with attentive service and a tet-a-tet over breakfast for an hour or so when nothing else on the earth issues is most positively a first-class first date or certainly any sort of date, expertise.
How a lot is Pullman model eating:
Pullman model eating prices £89 per individual, kids £69. There are a number of tiers of carriage and these might be discovered at https://www.royalwindsorsteamexpress.co.uk/