The final part of my trip into the Johannesburg CBD was to venture to the Carlton Centre and go to the 50th floor. I had been there once before, possibly shortly after it opened, but that was years ago and I hadn’t been near the Carlton Centre in years. The demographics of this area had changed and I suspect most of the shops that used to be in here have long closed. My mother even worked at the Garlics store before it too shut its doors.
When I got to the Carlton I was shocked at how busy it was. If anything it was even busier now than when I was young, and the mix of shops was more realistic instead of a heap of high class boutiques and specialist dealers. Those had long departed to the rarified air of Sandton City and Fourways. It only cost R15 for an adult and a swift trip in that high speed lift and suddenly I was 50 storeys up.
The weather was quite hazy and not as clear as I would have liked, and naturally there was the problem of grimy windows, reflections and nose prints to contend with. But they are not insurmountable.