I wrote last week [he's getting very self-referential, I'm not sure the readers like this sort of thing: Ed] about the coming heatwave and how the new "S" stock trains on the Metropolitan would cope. This morning I planned to catch number 441, starting from Uxbridge at 8:16, as the first test (The estimable Metcontrol on District Dave having kindly published the timetable of S stock workings). The weather certainly obliged with a real hottie but alas as 441 hove into view at Ruislip Manor it was an A stock.
Time for plan B. The day proved as hot as had been forecast and the Bakerloo up from Waterloo at the end of a long day's deskwork was as sticky and uncomfortable as you may imagine. An S stock service was scheduled to leave Baker Street at 18:22 and I was there with minutes to spare. To my joy the S train was sitting at the platform, with all its doors tight shut. I pressed the button, the door flew open and I was hit with a blast of chilled air like walking into the frozen food section of a supermarket. Glorious. The system works. 30c outside and a perfectly comfortable atmosphere in (it wasn't really that cold but the contrast with the steamy heat of London made it feel well nippy).
We left several minutes late, as it happened, but I couldn't have cared less. Simply not being on the hot, crowded and sweaty A stock trains that came up from the city and were sent out ahead of us, hence the delay, made it all worthwhile.