Sam and I had planned our route to London to pay our respects to the Queen, who will be lying-in-state in Westminster Hall from tomorrow evening until early Monday morning 19th September. We would drive to Thurrock Services on the Saturday evening, stay overnight at the Days Inn, and then drive to Dartford railway station as early as we could manage on the Sunday morning. From Dartford station we would get a train all the way to Charing Cross, thus avoiding having to go anywhere near the London Underground tube system, which I detest. From Charing Cross it would be but a short walk to Westminster Hall.

Then came the warnings on T.V. There would be long, long queues, possibly overnight, as millions of people would arrive in London. There would be travel chaos, with crowded trains and buses. There would be airport-like security checks in Westminster Hall, and random checks as people queued. We could only take a small bag with one compartment, and there would be no chance to sit down. We would have to bring food and drink and warm clothing for the duration, but could only take a small plastic bottle of drink.

They had forgotten something… what about toilets? Nobody on T.V has mentioned them, and it’s as if suddenly we have no need of them. However, for somebody who has to sip water every five minutes due to having no working salivary glands, toilets were the first thing I thought of. Yes, I’m a practical person who checks out these things, just as my youngest son used to do when he was a child. As long as there was a toilet he was happy to go anywhere. On T.V I saw the rush of people who had descended on St. Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh to view the lying-in-state there, and there was soon 20,000 people in a mile-long queue. What did they do regarding toilets, lol?

20,000 people is a pin in the ocean when it comes to London. Millions are expected to turn up in queues possibly 6 – 12 hours long. Hmm… was it like this when the old Queen Mum died? I don’t remember what happened 20 years ago now, but I’m certain that many more people than in 2002 will make their way to Westminster Hall. Can they all last 12 hours without going to the toilet? Why on earth am I thinking of such things? I’m sure that 40 years ago I would have skipped off happily to London and stood in the queue, but I’m 64 now and fings ain’t what they used to be…

I’ve changed my mind, and Sam is relieved. We’re going to watch the lying-in-state and the funeral on T.V.