This is compiled from what I recall Mother telling me at the time and what Mother recently told me.
Many people in Pakenham did it and Mother was no exception. The good folk of Pakenham used to catch the country train from town to Pakenham even though the train was pick up only at Pakenham. The reason was that it was faster, being an express train, quieter, there was a conductor on board and it was less likely that there would be rowdy youth on the train.
At various times there was a clamp down on Pakenham people who had a suburban train service but used the country service. Mother of course, took no notice of any clamp down. Into her sixties she was still a user of buses, trams and trains.
Now she has the luxury of a bus going past her house that can take her in two directions, most importantly to the local shops, but she says she is past using public transport.
The last time she caught a train was from Flinders Street Station. She waited at the usual country train platform for the train that was due about 5.30. She waited a good while. She thought it was late. It did eventually arrive. After Dandenong Station the conductor checked her suburban train ticket and informed her that there had been a timetable change and the next stop would be Warragul, a good half hour on from Pakenham.
Mother was loaded with shopping bags as well as her own handbags, plural. She put on a sob story to the conductor that her husband would kill her if he had to drive to Warragul to pick her up from the station. Whether the train was going to stop anyway or not I don't know, but the conductor indicated to Mother that it was making a special stop just for her at Pakenham and she needed to be ready to jump off really quickly as the train would only stop for a second or two. Mother was in panic mode and jumped out of the train so quickly she half fell onto the platform on top of her parcels.
She then carted her parcels to the phone box to ring the home phone for Step Father to pick her up from the station. She just rang the home phone and someone would come to pick her up. No need to pay for the call.
My mind boggles if she had gone on to Warragul and had to find change to make a phone call to Step Father to collect her. I am sure she would have called on the kindness of strangers to help her. Mother is rather good at that.
So there you go. That was Mother's last train trip, and apart from going on a couple of trams under our care when she expressed an interest in seeing Docklands one Father's Day, it was her last public transport experience.
I think there is only one more Mother's last posts to go. It was the last time she walked to the local shops and it is not particularly amusing or pretty.