I am a freelance writer with varied interests including personal development, pets, saving money and disability issues.
Cartoon style train on a wall in the Bowden area Image:Marie Vonow
I have always liked trains. When I come across trains in street art I just have to take a few photos. I am pleased I have seen a number of examples of street art where the trains featured are based on real trains. The older trains bring back memories.
One day I caught a train to Hove. I love the street art there which shows the history of trains used on Adelaide's suburban lines. During the early 1950s steam trains were replaced by diesel trains which became known as 'red hens'. My earliest recollections of travelling on a train are of the red hens.
I recall the first time I caught a train alone. Mum saw me safely onto the train and someone was there to meet me at the station where I had to get off.
By the time I was 16 I was considered responsible enough to catch a train on the weekend with friends or on my own to do some shopping in Rundle Street. (It was converted to a mall a few years later.) I loved travelling to Adelaide to buy clothes.
Red hens started to be phased out in the 1980s but some continued to be used until 1996. In the eighties I caught a train to work and so had many rides on a red hen. They were not air conditioned. During the summer I was pregnant with my first child I chose to catch an earlier train in the morning to make sure I got what was a 'new' train so I could benefit from air conditioning. After work I caught a later train to again take advantage of air conditioning.
This painting shows the history of South Australian suburban passenger trains. Image:Marie Vonow
The orange and silver trains introduced in the eighties only run at times of highest demand now. Personally, I find the seats on them more comfortable than those on the trains that followed them.
This type of train started running in the 1980s Image:Marie Vonow
These trains run currently on most of Adelaide's lines. Image:Marie Vonow
Some people like travelling to work in the city by train as it tends to be quicker and cheaper than driving in peak hour traffic. There are no worries about where to park and how much that will cost.
Part of the train theme mural at Elizabeth Railway Station Image:Marie Vonow
When I used to travel by train to work every week day most people read newspapers or books on the train. This was before the days of mobile phones, laptops and e-readers. A few people used the train trip to catch up on their sleep and once I became a mother I was one of them.
Many people enjoy listening to music on their mobile while they travel on the train these days. This is a helpful way for people who experience social phobia to feel less anxious about the close proximity to other people.
More of the mural at Elizabeth Image:Marie Vonow
While travelling to work by train takes some pressure off, if the train is running late it can cause stress. Having to stand when the train is crowded can also be stressful. The issues of time and overcrowding are indicated in the section of Salisbury's mural below.
Part of the transport mural at Salisbury Railway Station Image:Marie Vonow
Train street art around Adelaide brings back memories. It also makes me think about both the advantages and disadvantages of public transport.