Thursday, 2 January 2014

Cape Town 2013 - Part 1 - The Journey down

So on closing the chapter of studying and entering the new one of working, which every hates apparently. I found the initial transition quite daunting with no idea what to expect, the problem is always can you handle the unknown and most people are afraid they can't. But if one is to grow then one should get comfortable doing things that makes you uncomfortable. 

Thus on the 2nd on January I hopped on a train to cape town, after I had hopped on to the Gau-Train heading to the train station. The train station it self looked a bit worn out and shabby but the number of people there was quite staggering. The dimly lit boarding station was paved with concrete and had copious amounts of bubble gum bonded with it, and not as a result of a genius plan to reinforce it. A fence 3m tall spanning the whole platform prevented the entertainment from idiots with death wishes from stepping onto the rails. I would have taken photos but doing so would likely result in me no longer in possession of the camera or phone.

Given the poorly maintained boarding station my expectations of the train it self was not exactly high. Luckily the train(the Shosholoza Meyl) itself was it could good condition, aside from the few scribbles on the walls. The journey was said to take 27 Hours, so obviously I packed a few books to read(I know some of you are surprised that I can read given the poor grammar of my content, but those error are there to keep your wits about).

Me reading Robert Rankin's - The arbitrary title that's too long for me to remember
I also made use of the restaurant on the train which was quite good, for a restaurant on a train, had clean bed sheets and pillows to sleep on, for which you do have to pay R50. And mingled with our neighbours.
Meet the neighbors 

As the train made its way to Cape Town stopping every few hours at another station, we saw some interesting sights as well as lots of bland unsightly sights. Such as this mysterious tower which I believe to be host creatures who are plotting to take over earth, or just a mine shaft but that would be dull.

Night time on the train is quite different the whole atmosphere changes, and everything becomes eerie, walking from cabin to cabin is mysterious, the stations stops become more scenic and the noises the train make become more noticeable, which is a wonder I slept like a rock given the sound volumes it pumps out, I could hear the train in my dreams.

When we arrived at Cape Town we were met with a neatly kept train station that made us feel like we were in another first class country, like Sweden. Equipped with only our luggage we set off to find the car hire company. We could have been equipped with more stuff, like you know, a map or a gps, but where would the fun in that be! Instead we looked like a bunch of hitch hikers running around like we've just committed a murder and was looking for a place to hide.

When we finally got to the car hire outlet, and old saying of Cape Town rang true, "In Cape Town everything oozes along" meaning they are in no hurry AT ALL to help. It took us about an hour to actually get a car, a Hyundai i10, I actually liked the car, we headed of for our uncles home where we would be lodging for our trip.

To be drawn out longer...

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