Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Let the train take the strain

I needed to do a last bit of Christmas shopping today, before the weather turns again, and shopping in proper shops, not just the same old few that Merthyr has to offer.  So, rather than braving traffic, car parks & obscene parking charges, Squeaky, the Symbio & I jumped on the train to Cardiff.  Jumped being the operative word.  The train was in the station as we RAN up the slope, and we just got on before the conductor closed the doors.  Phew!  This train was pretty easy with the Symbio, a nice single step entry, and plenty of parking spaces for buggies, wheelchairs etc.  Off to a good start.

What's this then?

The journey's pretty dull to be honest with you.  I'd grabbed a shopping bag out of the back of the car before we set off, and on looking inside, I found some tinsel.  Hmmm.  Do you know what happens when I'm bored, and there's tinsel?  Something's going to end up sparkly!


The shops themselves proved to be fairly, well, shoppy.  Not too busy because it was a Wednesday, and even finding a seat in the coffee place wasn't too much of a challenge.  One thing I've discovered since having Squeaky is how many lifts there are, tucked away in corners you'd never have noticed otherwise.  However, there's still a few useless places.  Step forward & take a bow Benetton.  One escalator (up), one set of stairs.  Children's clothes on the top floor.  NO way to get to them.  The Symbio may be light, but with a Squeaky in it, it's not THAT light.  Oh well, they can't have wanted my money, I just had to spend it elsewhere!

Mooch mooch, shop shop.  Decided to come home before it got too late, and the trains got too busy.  The trains are a nightmare after 4, you can't get a seat for love nor money, and I didn't fancy squashing Squeaky onto the commuter train either.  So off we trrundled to the station, complete with its bilingual signs.

Where's the train?

And along came the train home.
Here it is!

This train was a bit more difficult.  Two steps on - though there was a ramp, the conductor wasn't being visible or offering any assistance.  No buggy/wheelchair spaces, and such a narrow aisle, the only place we could go was right next to the door.  Grump grump, groan groan.  But we managed.  Squeaky wore her new hat and got grouchy.

Are we nearly home now?

Finally though, I found something to occupy her.  A little bit of work experience, as a ticket collector.

Tickets please

The Symbio was great, the trains varied.  I'd've struggled more with the old buggy, so it's got to be a win.

The hat?  Angelic Upstart, from preschoolpunk.  Adorable or what?

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