A game in the south of England allows a more leisurely start to the travelling and so it was actually daylight when I left home to meet John and Bev (Wilson) at Waterloo station at 9:45am.
The idea was to allow us time to have breakfast at Maries Cafe on Lower Marsh, less than five minutes walk from platform 1 but overlooked by most people who use the station.
It was to be an extra- special treat for Beverley as it was their wedding anniversary - John is such a old romantic.
Trevor Rutter - down for the weekend with his wife - also joined us at Waterloo sans wife but he'd already been fed and watered.
John and I had been to Maries (who seem to have lost her apostrophe somewhere along the line) several times in the past year or two - most notably with Tony Waters before our win last season against Brentford. Hopefully an omen for our game today...
There is a multi-page menu available to list the various meals on offer - Thai food in addition to the normal breakfast fare.
However we opted for the simple menu which listed seven Speacial choices. Being a creature of habit it didn't take me long to decide to stick to my usual No. 7 and a portion of chips (and a nice strong cup of tea!).
The service here is fast and very friendly - the food is well cooked and decent quality - a great start to the day.
For those with time on their hands before catching a train, the cafe is opposite the Ian Allan Transport Book and Model shop which is one of those shops you feel a bit nerdy going into but which has a wonderful array of transport books, videos, models and such like.
I'll admit it now that I'm interested in railways - almost inevitable after growing up about 10 yards from a railway line back in the days of steam but I don't collect numbers - OK? The fact that I bought myself a book of Track Diagrams on my last visit is neither here nor there so please let's not mention that again...