One: train

In my eyes, locomotive travel has very little to do with Christmas. Steam powered trains, even less. Train sets might be common for children’s presents but for adults from that they’re not very festive – and barely used apart from display purposes.

Most trains are electric, and pretty ugly. Marrying a Gatwick Express with a Southern Railway train is probably the only way you’d manage a Christmas coloured offspring. But even in Thomas the Tank Engine trains don’t get married, so good luck with that one.

So this leaves one real way to associate a train with Christmas. Use it to get somewhere else. Somewhere better. Somewhere that’s not the town of Welwyn Hatfield. Unfortunately neither the Eurostar nor my financial pocket stretch to reach Lapland just yet, so my journey kept me within national borders.

I took a trip to see the lights in Oxford Circus, which have been on since November 8th. Bingo. Not really sure what the umbrellas were all about, but they looked good – even in the rain.

N.B. Your chances of getting stuck on a train increases as December wears on, due to the slightest variance in weather conditions. “Five leaves look like they might blow onto the track. Cancel this service immediately!” After December 15th your journey runs the risk of becoming distinctly unfestive. Just sayin’.