“Gautraining” on a blue Monday

Yesterday was a chilly, but beautifully, blue Monday. The day we decided to take our first trip on the Gautrain, which has been in operation for the last few months. Myself, and 15 other family members met up at the Sandton station. It was the end of the long weekend and many people seemed to be travelling to and from the O.R Tambo International Airport. There were many others, like us who just wanted to experience the Gautrain journey. The atmosphere was exciting, with a bustling crowd. Families and friends chatted jovially, despite the long queues and seemed to be enjoying the atmosphere.   

We took a trip to the Rhodesfield station, which is a stones throw from the airport. You have to pay an initial fee of R10 for a Gautrain Gold Card. Thereafter whenever you purchase tickets, your balance will be loaded onto your card. A round trip cost us a total of R54, which was fairly reasonable.

We took the escalators down to platform C.  I didn’t expect it to go so far down, but it made for quite an interesting photo. The train arrives every 12 minutes, so we didn’t have to wait too long. And besides that, when you have good company time always passes easily. I loved the exhilarating sound as the train arrived and the look of all the excited faces, obvious first-time passengers.

The train came to a halt and the doors slid opened. Everyone waited patiently for the other passengers to alight from their coaches. We then made our way onto the train, occupying the first and part of the second coaches. The seating was very comfortable and spacious. The interiors are aesthetically pleasing and luxurious. The ride was really quick and in the next few minutes we were already at the next station. We took the escalator down, swiped our cards twice and made our way onto the opposite end of the tracks. In less than five minutes the train arrived and we were on our way back to Sandton.

It was fun and memorable. What added to the experience was having such wonderful company. I’ve never been on a public train in South Africa. I was fortunate that my first-ever train ride was taken aboard the Gautrain. I’m so proud to be a part of this country. It is such a huge achievement. One, which many of us thought would never be possible. Well done to SA! 🙂

We spent the rest of the afternoon at Sandton City. Although I’m now too lazy to write there is one thing more worth mentioning. Lunch at Schlotzskys! It’s the first time I tried their food. Something, so different from the normal food outlets.  A round sandwich, made of sour dough, filled generously with chicken, salami, lettuce, cheese…and I have no idea what else. Yummy! Definitely worth a visit.

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