Jun 24, 2013

All Aboard......

My Dad was a railway man. He started working for the railway at 14 and retired at 56. 

Hence, I grew up travelling on trains. Some of my earliest and best childhood memories involve family holidays going somewhere on a train. One of my best ever memories is travelling from Brissy to Sydney on a train in a sleeping compartment with my then boyfriend (now husband) :-) And a few years back we took the kids from Brissy to Longreach - outback Queensland - on the train because I wanted them to have great memories of train travel too. Of course it was then that I realised that probably my parents didn't have such great memories of travelling on trains with four kids.....

So, it's fair to say that I freaking love trains!

There is nothing like the clickety clack of wheels on a track and the rock and sway of a carriage to put you to sleep at night. Nothing! Nothing like sitting in a dining car with a big window at your side, watching the world go by or watching it all whizz past from the luxury of your bed as you glance up from your book or your afternoon doze.

It's always been a dream of mine to do all the world's great train journeys. The Orient Express is on my bucket list as is the Trans Siberian Railway.  

And this train - The Indian Pacific.

4352 km from Sydney to Perth via Adelaide. From the Indian Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. An epic journey spanning a continent.

I've always wanted to go on this train. Since I was a little kid and Mum and Dad used to talk about how wonderful it would be.

And finally I'm going! The Romance Writers of Australia conference being in Perth this year has given me the perfect opportunity to say - we're doing it!

Three glorious days and nights in the luxury of Platinum class. A great big bed, an ensuite, a menu that makes my mouth water just thinking about it and all food and alcohol included.

And best of all books! I'm going to read so much on this train I may never want to leave!

Is it costing a freaking fortune? Yes it is. But life is short and at 43 I've waited long enough to fufill this childhood dream.

And you can bet your last cent there's going to be a train book out next year!

Oh and for those who have been following me on my very pulic FB weight loss journey - this trip is my reward for sticking to my low carb diet for the next 6 weeks. I'm warning you all now - there will be carbs on this train!

This is the train of carbs! And there will not be one single solitary moment of guilt!

What about you - like train travel? Ever been on any of the "biggies". What's your favourite mode of transport?


  1. Amy, I'm smiling at your enthusiasm for train travel. My parents did the Indian Pacific trip and loved it. I'm sure you will too. Me? I'm not such a fan of long train trips. Maybe it came from getting sick on the overnight train from Cairo to Luxor. Maybe it was the thrill of later trips in the not-so-luxury class of Egyptian trains. I recall one where a fellow traveller reclined in the overhead bracket designed for luggage. On the other hand there have been some beauties. Head south from Switzerland to Italy via Domodossola and check out the gorgeous scenery. Ditto the Rhine.

  2. Such a shame for those bad experiences, Annie :-(
    Am putting your suggestions on my great-train-trips list!

  3. Oh, Amy, I looked into doing the Indian Pacific for the conference too, but I'm afraid time (and money) have decided I'm flying. Which makes me incredibly happy as I LOVE planes and airports. I LOVE take offs, they're so much fun. Mind you, the 20+ hours it takes to get to Europe doesn't fill me with quite so much enthusiasm. ;-)

  4. What a lovely post, Amy. I remember travelling up to North QLD on a train when I was little. It was sooo exciting being in a sleeper car. We also have a funny over night trip from Brisbane to Sydney. We had a carriage for 6 but there were only five of us. The spare seat was next to me and my Dad said, "I bet a 90 year-old woman comes and sits next to you and teaches you to knit." And, that's exactly what happened. Freaky!!!

  5. Oh, just fabulous Amy. I've got a similar background. My grandfather (my guardian) was first a fireman, then an engine driver, then worked in the offices of the Railways. We travelled everywhere by train, both on the last of the steam trains and then on the diesels. I just love that clackety-clack rhythm.

    So great to be going right across the wide brown land in luxury.

  6. Amy

    I so wish I could get on that train with you and go to Perth for the conference it will be a blast it is one trip hubby and I have talked about as well. As a child we travelled everywhere on a train neither of my parents ever had a drivers license or a car LOL so train travel it was and Mum would take us up to the central coast every holiday we had and yep there were 4 of us as well. This post has bought back some great memories. And huge congrats on the weight loss Amy way to go I wish I had the courage

    Have Fun

  7. Sounds like you'll have a ball Amy! Looking forward to seeing you in Perth!

  8. Hey Amy

    Unlike you, we kept off trains if you could possibly help it - they were not luxury travel in Southern Africa when I was growing up... but I get your excitement about this train. The grandness, the plushness and the food! Always wanted to do the Orient Express, London to Venice...maybe one day.

    Enjoy you time on the train - have a blast! And I can't wait for that book set on that train!


    Bye 4 now

  9. Hi Amy - how fabulous that you're doing the Indian Pacific...what a wonderful way to cross the country. Enjoy!

  10. I wanna come to Perth on the train too! We have pretty slow trains here in NZ but they go through some amazing countryside. My most memorable train trip was up through the middle of Malaysia with stops in amazing little villages, sometimes for 10 minutes, sometimes for 3 hours! I'm sure you'll have a fantastic time going to Perth.

  11. I love airports more than I do the flying bit, Michelle. Lets just say I like it when I'm back on the ground again :-)

    And those killer international flights - ugh!

  12. LOL Jen - how funny :-)
    Is your Dad known for his ESP?

  13. Thanks Vonnie! My Dad was a clerk but he had plenty of friends in the railway who were firemen or drivers and I always thought that sounded very cool!

    I dont know about you but I think I was really lucky to have that experience grwowing up.

    And tThere's just something so romantic about old-fashioned train travel!

  14. Thanks Helen - pleased and happy to present you with an opportunity to walk down memory lane :-)

    And there hasn't been much weight loss yet but I'm hanging in there, so thanks :-)

  15. If I dont have a ball I reckon it will be entiely my own fault, Nicole :-) How could I not?

  16. Hey Tina I think there is a luxury train ride you can do in Sth Africa now??
    Off to Google :-)

  17. Wow, Barb, that Malaysian train trip sounds fab!
    And I'd love to go on a NZ train - the slower the better. On trains it really isn't about the destination, it's about the journey :-)

  18. I get quite motion sick, so I usually take whatever is the quickest transport method. Over to Perth, that will be a plane. But that photo is so gorgeous that I'm jealous!

    Take heaps of photos so I can live vicariously, please. :)