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Timetable Trouble

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"Five minutes! That's when I'm supposed to be leaving."
"Actually, it's only four minutes now!
"
— Gordon and James

Timetable Trouble is a magazine story.

Plot

One day, the Fat Controller had made out some new timetables. Each driver is given a timetable for their own particular engine.

On the first morning of the new timetables, Gordon is waiting at the platform as his passengers arrive one-by-one. Then, Gordon sees James backing towards him. James is surprised to find Gordon at the platform in his way. Gordon explains that he is scheduled to leave in five minutes' time. James says that he is scheduled to depart from that platform in five minutes' time. Then, Thomas puffs up behind Gordon and says that he is supposed to leave in five minutes' time.

The three engines argue for at least ten minutes and the passengers end up getting rather annoyed. The Fat Controller arrives to see what is going on. The Fat Controller inspects the engines' timetables and realises the mistake; he has given all three engine drivers the same timetable. The Fat Controller promises to rectify the mistake, but for the time being, he tells his engines that they must learn to take turns.

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