Holmes ignored his friend's unanswerable question whilst Watson carefully sketched the headings for future reference, leaving out Tideswell in each case to save time and space.
"But, but," spluttered Watson in confusion, "where should Miss Harper-Hill have boarded her carriage number 65? I must confess Holmes that it is totally beyond me."
"But it gets worse," wailed Watson as they arrived, "carriages leave here for Sheffield and Meadowhall but they are now coloured blue and not green ...
Watson seemed unable to comprehend the existence of two carriage services, both labelled 65.
"It seems you are right, Holmes," sighed Watson, "yet again Moriarty of Matlock has been at his dastardly ways. We are undone!"
"Do not despair, old chum, we will eventually unravel the knotted string of confusion that Moriarty and his team have tied here. Alas it will be too late to help Miss Harper-Hill who may never risk travel by horseless carriage again."
"An utter disgrace," hissed Watson, "Moriarty of Matlock is an utter bounder!"
As they trudged wearily away from the Market Place, they both failed to notice two bus stop flags ...
As their express drew close to Saint Pancras railway station, Holmes seemed to wake from his three-pipe reverie and almost shouted,
Let us hope that Moriarty never uses the excellent information facilities to find his way to somewhere like the exquisite and spectacular Reichenbach Falls!"
Now the above is a bit of nonsense, but lying behind it is a real problem. Whilst we may be able to understand how the two service 65s happened; and there may be a good commercial reason why High Peak decided to run through Buxton in the opposite direction to Stagecoach but used the same route number and destinations ...
... it is not an excuse.
What isn't satisfactory is the way in which it is presented.
A start would be to remove completely all journeys that are terminating in Buxton. (But we can't do that, those panels are produced automatically by our computer system).
GREEN (Station), DARK BLUE (Market Place) and now we see BROWN at Terrace Road - all for the 65s. (But we can't do that, those panels are produced automatically by our computer system).
And then there's the bus stop flags.
What bugs fbb is how bus operators can tolerate this. The bus stop "flag" is one of the key adverts for your bus service. The display in the frame is an important piece of comfort, assurance and a potential source of new customers.
So why do you allow it to be so disgraceful?
Would a Tesco store allow their local authority to advertise their products? Would ASDA tolerate tatty ASDA signs outside their stores showing tired logos and gunge encrusted posters?
So why do you tolerate it?
And please, please don't bleat on about cost pressures. The costs of doing the job properly are negligible compared with the cost of running a bus company. Alternatively, it could all be funded by an increased fee for registrations (hypothecated** - essential).
It is easy to solve - SO WHY NOT GET ON AND SOLVE IT!
** hypothecated : a weird word that means that a tax or fee MUST be used for a set designated purpose, not thrown into some vast and unfathomable heap used for anything the government or local authority decides at any given moment.