The last few trains on Wednesdays are always surprisingly full. There are less carriages, and they are livelier and louder than those on the stoic peak hour trains. Passengers in suits, coats, jumpers, tracksuits, dresses, skirts and jeans sit and tak or read papers, or in Melbourne Train Girl's case tap their feet to the music in their headphones and write.
She listens to Nina Simone and closes her eyes to let that voice surround her. Blocking out the harsh lights, blocking out the loud conversations, and blocking out the scrolling words that thank her for travelling with Connex. She writes and writes until her pen runs out, and when a search for one that works in amongst the endless array of useless items in her handbag comes up empty she turns phrases over in her mind, remembering and refining the best ones.
She writes in someone elses diary. She found it on a bench on the platform at Flinders Street, and has been carrying it in her handbag ever since. Useless items. She had shown it to the Short Boy, and he had turned to her like an excited school boy and told her they would each tell the other who they thought had owned it. Melbourne Train Girl had lit up and dived hungrily into his game. People fascinate her. He fascinates her.
Now she adds her thoughts to the international phone numbers, the letter to god and the notes on a manicure class. She thinks she might leave it somewhere herself after a time. She wonders who will find it and what they will think when they read it. Will they add their own words to those already accumulating? She hopes so.
Nina Simone plays through her head long after she has turned the music off, and her hands have once again found themselves a working pen. She could listen all day and all night and still never hear all of what that voice and those fingers over ivory keys can do.