Thanks for the memory 2001
I lived at Marino Rocks for 30 years from 1950 and went to and from the primary school at Brighton from Marino from 1952 to 1958 in Centenary coaches hauled by either an F or a Rx steam locomotive.
As my parents had 4 children under 5 years of age at the start of my schooling, I recently asked my mother (who still lives at Marino Rocks after 68 years), did she accompany me, along with my 3 younger siblings to Brighton at the start of my schooling. She stated that she did so on the first 2 days only, after that I was on my own. She went on to say that when she and the other mothers arrived at Marino after school to collect us children, they all had to wait until the Rx was turned around. The older boys were allowed to assist the driver and fireman on the manual turntable while the remainder of us children climbed aboard the locomotive. Only after turning and taking the locomotive to the end of the coaches for the return to Adelaide would we children get off.
From the start of my schooling, every Saturday morning, after breakfast, I would go down to the rail yards at Marino to watch the shunting. After a while the crews go to know me, and, if there was no inspector on the train, most times I would be allowed to ride in the cab. They shunted open wagons filled with builders aggregate from the Linwood Quarries and and in the early years cement from the Brighton Cement Works. I would come home covered in soot, cinders and cement dust, and my mother, at the start, would scold me. As dad worked on Saturday mornings, she could not hand him over to him for punishment. After a while she realised it was futile and so gave up.
The father of a good friend I went to school with was a guard on the SAR and they lived at Willunga, so he would accompany his father on the first train in the morning from Willunga and either get of at Marino Rocks and stay at our place until it was time to go to school, or he would go to his aunt at Hove and go to school from there. A few times during my schooling, I would be allowed to stay overnight at his place, so I would accompany him with his father on a steam hauled train to Willunga, and return early the next morning.
I remember the storage of the Centre Loader coaches on the siding at Marino, and on occasions my friend would purloin (steal) a brass guard's pass key from his father and we would enter the coaches. From memory they were only stored there on weekdays.
I went for my first job interview in January 1962 by steam hauled train to Adelaide, and then by tram to Magil. My first ride in a Redhen was when I started work in 1962 to Mile End Goods siding.I would go to Marino early, and if a Redhen arrived, I would give it a miss hoping that the next train was steam hauled. Eventually, off course, now more steam engines came so I was forced to ride in those horrible rail cars. To this day I still detest them.