Family day trip

Caroline, one of my old friends from IRC days, mailed me a couple of week ago to let me know that she and her little daughter, Kirsten, will be arriving today at O.R. Tambo Airport and stop over for about an hour before flying on to P.E. with her parents. I thought this was an excellent excuse to take Vicky and Bronwen on the Gautrain.

Vicky was ecstatic when we arrived at the station. She kept asking where we are, and when we replied “At the station” she just wanted to see the train. When we finally had our tickets and descended the equivalent of 11 floors into the ground to reach the airport line we had to hold on to Vicky as she just wanted to run all over the platform. When then train came slowly down the tunnel into the platform she shrieked with pleasure and exclaimed in enthusiasm “Here comes the train!”

It’s a little sad that the train has to be underground in the city areas, but understandable. It would have been amazing to be able to travel above ground through Sandton to Marlboro station instead of the darkness that surrounded the train in the tunnel. When we finally saw the light of day coming up the Marlboro station Vicky asked Bronwen for her shades.

Vicky was constantly jumping around and looking out the window and laughing with pleasure at the sights passing us by. She was really enjoying herself. She summed it up perfectly when we rolled into the O.R. Tambo station. She looked out the window and whispered in awe

“Wooow. It’s beautiful”

This was the first time Bronwen and Vicky had been on the Gautrain, but I’ve been once before on it’s maiden commercial voyage . I’m still struck by how well it all works, and was amazed at the number of people using it, be it for actual trips or tourist trips. I really hope this is a successful venture as we really do need a decent mass transportation system like this.


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