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Some joy and some suffering-all in a days work

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

This month has been a tough one financially. That being said, I was unable to get to boot camp on Monday. I will be back on track on Friday, however, yesterday my sister decided that she didn't want me to miss another day of boot camp so offered to drop me, take her husband to work, then fetch me afterward.
Sounded wonderful, so this morning I was up early and ready and all went well. Our dear trainer actually asked the 7 ladies present if we would like a short-intensive work out, or a longer-less tough work out. We chose short-intensive. LOL I should wondered why he asked. It was intensive, but no less short. Yikes, one hour of hectic cardio and upper body stuff.
We did something called a plank, on my elbows. Then after 30 seconds while staying in the plank position, we raise ourselves up onto our hands and hold for 30 seconds, after that we had to while still in the plank, crab walk across our work out mat and back. After two of those my arms were shaking like a leaf on a branch on a windy day.
After the session, I pack up my stuff and wait for my sister. Seeing me sitting on the side of the road, I was offered no less than 3 lifts home, but my answer was consistently "please don't worry, my sister in on her way"....except something went wrong and she didn't come.
I had no call time in my phone so couldn't call my hubby or son. The only one I could make contact with was my sister who had already explained that she was running late.
I also had a call from my mom to say she was being released from hospital and could I please fetch her, so I got hold of my sister to tell her that I would begin walking home and gave her the exact route I would take. I walked and walked and walked while carrying my warm jacket since its cold first thing in the morning, a pair of dumbbells, an exercise mat and a water bottle. I kept on walking and sending her the new street names as I reached them and still no Gale.
In the good old end, I walked ALL THE WAY HOME which is 2kms (1.2 miles) extra AFTER our heavy work out session. I couldn't believe it myself, but the story doesn't end there.

Once inside I peeled off the trainers from my tired feet, my phone rang and it was my son inviting me to the Signalman's Arms (a little bar that he manages at the station) for a BIG SURPRISE. I was confused because he made exactly the same invite yesterday and I couldn't take up his offer then because I was at the hospital with my mom and no transport. Today however, he included my hubby and it was in working hours and hubby agreed to go. Strange, my hubby NEVER takes off during working hours?????

The surprise was that Daniel had gotten us a guided tour aboard the ROVOS RAIL LUXURY TRAIN which was over-nighting at our station. Wow, that was awesome, especially as he asked if we could take photo's and got permission.

Before I show you the photos, I want you to know that on top of my boot camp session, my 1.2 mile walk, I walked through 17 coaches, each on 18 meters long (59 feet) without counting the 2 steps you take between coaches. My feet are just so darn sore tonight its just not funny, not to mention my poor aching knee. I think I walked enough today for a lifetime emoticon

As you can see, its coaches as far as the eye can see. So not only did I walk through 17 coaches, but I had to walk back again to the bar for breakfast and coffee. Shoo.

This is the young barman named Fritz that gave us the guided tour. A very pleasant young man, however still reeking from what he drank the night before. Turned out they partied the night away with the guests at the Signalman's Arms till 3am.
While the guests were sleeping in, the staff had to be up and at it, for any early risers.

As we walked and he showed us different areas, he would give us an explanation of what it was used for. My only wish was that he had not included the prices, because once I knew, I ended up SO UNCOMFORTABLE lol....stupid hey? But there you have it, silly things that make up our personalities. Being broke didn't help me feel my most confident, neither did my depleted energy levels help much. Anyway, this is the observation room which says it all. This is where folks sit, order their drinks and watch the world speed by on their African Safari by rail.

This round trip would set you back this amount....
If you took the Royal Room R91 500 pp = $68207.23 or going a little cheaper with the
Delux Room would be R68 000 pp = $50689.53 or slumming in
Pullman coach would cost R45 000 = $3354.45 emoticon
So you get why I was suddenly soooo out of place.
So here are those rooms you would pay so handsomely to SLEEP in.

Pullman which is a shared coach of seats which turn into beds by night.

Young waiter doing room service duties.

Dining coach. We got there as the waiter was preparing the tables for breakfast, but from what I heard about the party till 3am....I'm not sure too many will be up for breakfast or up to breakfast.

Lounge area. It comes complete with a library of all kinds of books, and a writing desk.

A cute little post box for anyone who did write while on the train.

Designated smoking area for those who's needs to puff matches the puffing steam train they are on. emoticon

Balcony coach for those who love outdoors even during travel.

The passages skinny and much darker than the rooms, probably because of all that dark wood paneling, still very beautiful and rich looking.

After my breakfast of a toasted sandwich with cheese and ham and a cup of coffee (sure their breakfast was muuuuch better lol) it was time to watch the train depart.

It was a cold, rainy day in George today, so the waiters went around serving sherry and juice for children. What a way to start your journey.

So there went the train with all its merry makers....poorer by thousands, but merry all the same.

Here are some places they will be going (according to their catalog)
First stop from us would be Cape Town, where they will enjoy taking the cable car up to the famous Table Mountain. My nephew has a photo stand up there, so maybe he'll get to make some money with this group of tourists all wanting their photo with the cable car and mountain in the background.

They will stop at Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.

Included would be traveling through game reserves in vehicles and some areas on foot.

They will see some of the big 5 which will include the magnificent rhino sadly hunted for its huge horn. Such a tragedy since the horn is onlycompacted hair and has no ability to aid anyone sexually. Ridiculous that such a beautiful beast should die a horrendous death for such nonsense. Anyway, lets not dwell on this.

The majestic king of the jungle.

And the not-quite-so-majestic other felines. Snoozing after a feed no doubt.

Namibia's Kalahari huge desert will not be missed. Those shifting sands are quite something to behold firsthand.

The big hole of Kimberley is also on their list of INCREDIBLE sights to see. It's from this giant hole that millions of tons of diamonds have been removed. If you wear a beautiful diamond ring.....the diamond may have come from this area.

The train will carry its human cargo all across this incredible bridge over the Hex River at Dar es Salaam in Tanzania with its permanent gentle mist due to the roaring waterfalls. These privileged few intrepid explorers will be having the time of their lives on this, their epic African adventure.

They head off to Egypt, take a yacht ride through the nile and get to see the Sphinx which still nurses its secrets that lie within.

Of course they will SO MUCH MORE than I have put in here, these are just a few highlights.

Bottom line is....I walked soooo much today, had a breakfast with a bunch of strangers, got to hear about their world, got to speak to the staff and heard about how much some are missing home, having been on this train for 28 days already. On the other hand, I've stayed busy all day with helping my mother settle in after her knee replacement. She is not someone who can spend much time on her own, which means I am in her flat more than I am in my home. It included a trip to the pharmacy for her post op medication, and a few other items she wanted. Now its time to go and make an egg on toast for dinner because I dont have any energy for anything that takes longer to cook than that. emoticon
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Wow! The people from Rovos Rail always tipped handsomely when they visited the game farm where I worked as a youngster. Everybody was always excited to hear that they were coming.
    1514 days ago
    Hey Celeste!

    You have earned some "ME" time, the hard way!

    Please take some timme OFF everything and take good care of yourself.

    Your pics are beautiful.
    1515 days ago
    What GORGEOUS territory to behold!

    So happy for you to have had these experiences...well worth all the walking! :-)

    1516 days ago
    Incredible pictures of the train! You deserve a hot bath and a good rest. emoticon
    1517 days ago
    what a beautiful train

    oh my goodness --you never said why your sister missed you!

    walking is good for the soul --lol the sole of your feet no!

    I went and did a 30,000 step challenge (15 miles) had blisters for a week ..
    I know your pain! hugs hugs

    thanks for sharing those beautiful spots --I love the hole one the best -- a marvel
    1517 days ago
    So much fun!! I know my DH would LOVE to be on that train! emoticon
    1518 days ago
    Wonderful blog

    Thanks for working so hard to show us those great pictures. What a train!

    You got a lot of exercise, I know you were bushed.

    Hugs Mary
    1518 days ago
    Double posted, but still awesome emoticon
    1518 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/21/2013 11:10:00 PM
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    1518 days ago
  • GINA180847
    Oh Celest you sure did get your exercise today. What a nice son to give you something like that. Very posh!
    1518 days ago
    Oh my goodness! That train is so much nicer than the one we ahve here in the states called Amtrack. It sounds like you ahd a lovely torur of it.

    I hope your mom is doing well.
    1518 days ago
  • LINDA!
    What fantastic pictures. Your son is a sweetheart to do this for you and hubby. Inside the train looks spectacular. I am so happy that you enjoyed it.

    I am glad that you did do a lot of exercise. But so sorry that you had such a bad start of the day with missing a ride, etc.
    1518 days ago
    Well, my friend, you DID get your exercise in today. That train sounds magnificent. Doubt they will gt to visit the sphinx in Egypt though...all the tourist stuff was closed according to the news last night. Scary stuff going on in some parts of the world, for sure! I am happy for you that your Mum is home. At least that will save you trekking to the hospital and making special food deliveries. You are amazing, my friend. emoticon

    1518 days ago
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