please empty your brain below

Hope you have wrapped up - it’s a bit chilly today. Don’t forget to pick up some Welsh cakes and have a pint of Brains.
Don't do this *too* well or we'll start wondering if your other trips were real.
Lucky - on Great Western I always seem to get a ‘window’ seat without an actual window.
Have a great trip ! - will catch up later on how it went.
Glad you are enjoying the view out of the window. Theres a lot to see - if it's not raining.
It's a glorious sunny day in South Wales. At least I picked a good day for weather.
Brilliant idea!!! ... Thanks for inviting us along. Enjoy your day - will check by later. AB
Hmm. I've been looking at the red lines on the map but struggle to find any exotic names.
Perhaps you're heading to Merthyr?
I thought what Sarah thought too.
Ooh a day 'out'! That'll blow the cobwebs away!

I thought Barry Island turned out to be the exotic sounding place seeing as it was mentioned in the preceding time reference! I went there with the school when I was 14. It isn't!
Back in September I had to go to Cardiff on a Saturday and considered taking that train, but timing would have been very tight so hired a car instead, also leaving at 5am. Train would have been more fun and cheaper.
Once there though, we were treated to a guided bus tour of the city and Penarth, which was the best part of the day for me.
Should have been in Cardiff myself last weekend...
For exotic Cardiff it can ony be the birthplace of Shirley Bassey, Tiger Bay!
A bit breezy in Cardiff I bet.

dg writes: Gusting to 35mph.

I too bought lower priced tickets from GWR, and today I should have been in Bristol enjoying Brunel, beer and.. other things beginning with B
As a perpetual busybody I demand that you put yourself into virtual quarantine or I'll call the virtual police.
Cymru am beth! (Wales for ever!)

You're heading to the town of my birth two stops from the end of the line, or nearby. I wonder what has attracted you. I will find out soon.

I hope you played with the crabs in the rock pools at the edge of the beach, depending on the time of the tides, of course. My favourite day out when I was a child.

I never associated Barry with a man's name until now, it simply never occurred to me, but of course it will always be from now on. Thanks.
You get the Stagecoach buses as well with a South Wales day rover. So you can do one valley, catch a bus to the top of another (provided your journey is essential) and then come back to Cardiff. The scenery is disappointing, because you have to imagine what it was like well over a century ago.

If you haven't virtually set off for the afternoon yet, don't do the Merthyr line and don't do Barry to Bridgend (you don't see the sea for more than few seconds). Combining Aberdare and Treherbert is the best, in my opinion. Finish it off with the train to Penarth, then walk to Cardiff Bay station (that will count as your one exercise a day) over the barrier across the bay.
I walked over the barrage from Cardiff Bay to Penarth last time, so not this time.
Since you love a station named after some random person, how about a trip to Keith?
Tough to do in a day mind (as I imagine they say in Wales).
I can't believe how all these trains are running to time!
Ah Barry Island....visited on a day out from my aunty's in Aberdare in the early 1950s. My first ride on a rollercoaster, a thrill never seen in my part of Wiltshire. It was a wooden one too; sadly demolished according to Wikipedia and replaced by something deemed to give more excitement....and apparently it was a Scenic Railway and not a rollercoaster.
James They don't normally, and if not outright cancelled, can run fast between principal destinations at breakneck speed to make up time. Great fun! Not so good for DG with his tight schedule, although there are plans to re-double sections of track to alleviate the problems.

Martin It is a shame that there are no buses between Treherbert and Aberdare (or Merthyr). The views from Rhigos mountain are spectacular, it would be a hefty but doable walk.
Thank you for keeping us entertained and I'm glad I helped you a little with your virtual tour.

I've never actually been up on the various "Valley Lines" from Cardiff and I really must get around to going north from Cardiff, once we are allowed out again.
Ah you “visited” both the places that make up the name Pontypandy, where Fireman Sam lives.
Tidy tour But. If it's cold have some Cawl followed by cup of tea and bara brith.
Fantastic to follow your day out during the day. Here's to plenty more.
Shame you didn’t have time to do the walk from Merthyr to Aberfan along the route of a long disused railway - it’s very atmospheric and sobering from the old massive hoover factory, the chapels on the terraced streets and then the memorial gardens at Aberfan
As a bit of a geek about these things, a scenic railway is a subgenre of the wood roller coaster. The former's primary distinguishing features are an on board brakeman on each train and the lack of so-called upstop wheels. You're welcome.
Some further info for you:

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