A Titanic Dinner
13 April 2002
As a belated treat for Teresa’s birthday, we had booked an Elegant Excursion to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. Elegant Excursions provide lunches and dinners prepared and served on the Pullman coaches of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway, including regular theme evenings, such as this one.
We had intended to reach the station in time to see our train pull in, but were delayed on leaving home by a glitch in the burglar alarm system. We had to leave the house flashing like a blue police siren, but warned the neighbours, just in case anybody reacted. (No one did.)
When we got to the station, the train was already virtually full, and we had time only for a brief view of our engine, the mighty Raveningham Hall, built in 1944, which was to take us to Gotherington and back – twice – during the evening.
Most of the passengers had dressed for the occasion, the men opting predominantly for dinner jackets, which are fairly timeless, but some of the ladies were in period costume. Roger attempted to look vaguely nautical.
The menu recreated the first class menu for that last evening on the Titanic:
The champagne cocktail, followed by the hors d’oeuvres, which started the dinner:
As the train moved almost imperceptibly up and down the line, the captain announced at intervals the fateful progress of the disaster, and passed down the train to reassure us:
Darkness fell during the journey. Unlike the liner, the train made it safely back to Toddington. We finished the final course, coffee, about three hours after we boarded.
Thereafter, it was a short walk home, where Teresa easily reset the alarm system, despite our earlier confusion.
A very pleasant evening and an excellent birthday celebration.