Gautrainer: Peaches and Chocolates

2015-03-31 11:34

Peaches and chocolates; a wonderfully decadent desert for those with a gutsy pallet – my referral though not about desert and neither do I have a great recipe. In fact, I have borrowed this line from Lethabo, my co-workers 6 year old son.

When trying to explain to his mother that his friend Amy was coming to visit she said: “oh the white one,” and he promptly replied; “ no mommy, my peach friend.”  In an effort to correct him she said; “no, she is white”, because that is what we as adult South Africans have learned to be correct.  He disapprovingly shook his head, pointed at her shirt and said;"no mommy, your shirt is white.  Amy is peach, and peach is not white." Astonished by his point of view she then said – “and Kagiso?” to which Letabo replied – “he is my chocolate friend, but not like Amesh, Amesh is my chocolate friend with the peach hair that is not so curly as mine and Kagiso’s” .

What a wonderful way of describing himself and others, away from the prejudice of color  or race, just a friend, a person– no name calling, different but the same. In fact, when I think of peaches and all the shapes and sizes you get, hairy ones, juicy ones, dried out wrinkled ones – and chocolates, bitter ones, sweet ones with any type of filling, 80% cocoa ones, with or without nuts. In my opinion Letabo might actually have a point, in that we are all peaches and chocolates and, mixed together might just make a decadent desert – sure, it is not everybody taste, because eh, not all peaches are juicy, and not all chocolates are sweet… Maybe if like Letabo we change the way we look at things, the things we see and how we see might change.

This brings me to the Gautrain and the bus strike, yes, it was weeks ago, I can be a silly peach if something bugs me. There was no warning, we were just stuck at the bus stop because well, bus stops does not have radios so, we could not hear the announcement on the news. It was an illegal bus strike – why did they not hire temporary bus drivers? I know for a fact that the bus drivers can not take the buses home at night, so that (buses) must have been at the depots? In my opinion at the end of day one they could have gotten drivers to replace the illegal strikers.

Many South Africans actually want to work and wants to be part of our decadent desert, we do not want to be held ransom by some custard or jello group that shape shifts into whatever works for that week, and next week the custard is sour and the jello has melted and we are left with nothing more than a sticky mess that no one wants to clean up.

The other matter that really made me laugh was the new Gautrain slogan/advertisement about “family time”. In essence this whole billboard is false. Passengers are rewarded for using so called “off peak times”, which is before 06H00 in the morning and after 18H00 in the evening. Taking travel time to and from station into account, you will leave the house anything from 05H00 in the morning, and you will be home just in time to put the kids to bed at 19H00. Where is the family time referred to? Yes well, at least you will not be stressed when reading the bedtime story, but will you be able to stay awake to complete it?

There are many pro’s for using the train, but it is definitely not because it is cheaper nor that it gives you more family time. At least now they are making an effort to make available more parking space, hopefully one of these days more buses with better routes will follow – a necessity that has been overlooked the last 3-4 months. Maybe if we planned the buses and routes better there would not be a need to purchase new land and build more parking spaces…

Lastly I have an idea, could Gautrain, now that they are building and erecting new parking area’s, not build a little convenience store? They can call it “the Gauvenience Shop”, something small. Hook up with Woolies or Pick & Pay, someone to assist in the cost. My reasoning is simple, we all need something at the shops after work, its either bread or milk, but something will be short at home, that’s a guarantee. So if I could quickly get something before I go out of the parking area – well, for me that will be great – and in the morning I can get a quick coffee – awesome. Do a survey, I bet that this will make the Gautrain station more of a destination than just a place to get transport from.

Well, that’s all this peach has to say today – have a decadent week.

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