Fandango’s Provocative Question #60: How did you meet your significant other?


A Date with a Train

I’m not sure if I have ever told the story of how David and I met on this blog before so here goes.

It was 1975, three days before my 18th birthday. Naomi and I had gone on a steam train trip for the day. We were visiting the Kernewek Lowender, a Cornish themed festival held in the towns of Moonta, Wallaroo and Kadina. We travelled on steam train excursions every couple of weeks during the autumn winter and spring in those days.

image 520 class loco
SAR 520 class “Sir Malcolm Barclay Harvey” at Adelaide Railway Station

On this particular trip our locomotive suffered a mechanical failure and most of the passengers, who were nearly all railfans like us, were anxious to find out what was going on. Would the engine be repaired in time for the trip home or would we, shock, horror, have to be hauled home by a diesel?

It was during our stay in Kadina when everyone was discussing the situation with their fellow passengers that I met David. We just fell into conversation, nothing dramatic but after that trip we saw each other on several more trips and always spent some time together talking. After a couple of months, David asked me if he could take me on the next one. So that was our first date, sort of. Our first proper date came a little later when he asked me out to dinner. We were both very young, he turned twenty that winter but by summer we were dating regularly.

SAR Pacific 621 at Adelaide station

We met at weekends and most of our outings were rail themed. Sometimes we’d meet at Adelaide Station on a Saturday morning and we’d jump on a train for a day out. Sometimes just up to the National Park at Belair or to Gawler, the longest suburban train ride or to Hallett Cove where we eventually bought a house. If we met early enough we could catch one of the few remaining country services to Victor Harbour, Peterborough or Port Pirie. Not the most romantic sort of dates I suppose but it was what we liked doing. Neither of us drove but we travelled on a heck of a lot of trains.

After a year of this we were engaged, he proposed to me on a train of course. We were married the following year, at the Adelaide Railway Station and had our reception in a dining car attached to the last steam train trip of the year.

image wedding photo
Wedding day, I was 20, David 22.

When David died in October 2015 we were just over a week shy of our 38th wedding anniversary.

Taswegian1957

I was born in England in 1957 and lived there until our family came to Australia in 1966. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where I met and married my husband David. We came together over a mutual love of trains. Both of us worked for the railways for many years, his job was with Australian National Railways, while I spent 12 years working for the STA, later TransAdelaide the Adelaide city transit system. After leaving that job I worked in hospitality until 2008. We moved to Tasmania in 2002 to live in the beautiful Huon Valley. In 2015 David became ill and passed away in October of that year. I currently co-write two blogs on WordPress.com with my sister Naomi. Our doll blog "Dolls, Dolls, Dolls", and "Our Other Blog" which is about everything else but with a focus on photographs and places in Tasmania. In November 2019 I began a new life in the house that Naomi and I intend to make our retirement home at Sisters Beach in Tasmania's northwest. My current housemates are Cindy, my 14-year-old Staffy-Lab X dog and Polly the world's most unsociable cat who is seven.

7 comments

  1. That is such a lovely story, in the days when we met in person rather than the internet and dated properly first. I was18 when I met my husband at a disco. He used t be a train spotter in his childhood. It’s now aeroplanes and drag racing. We’re celebrating our 30th Anniversary this year. Do you still have your wedding dress? That was a lovely way to get married, combining it with your interest in trains.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I still have mine, I wanted to try it on again on our Silver Wedding Anniversary which I did and it still fit. I’ll be trying it on again this year, it will probably fit but I may not be able to fasten it up. (it’s that age thing and the M word when you put on weight for no reason!) A couple of Sindy’s wedding dresses from the same era are similar in style and shape to yours. The 1977 one with the lace overcoat and the one where she has a hat with pink roses on it, sold as a boxed bride doll.

        Liked by 1 person

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