Sunday, September 14, 2008

Short Line

I've been, for the most part, absent here since school started.  I've been productively busy with my school work and it feels good, but I still miss all the time I had during the summer to do whatever I wanted to do - mostly nothing.  I wish every working person could have the time off that I have each year.  Having done nothing else except teach since I got out of college, summer vacation has been a part of my life for nearly my whole existence.  I don't understand how most folks keep going week after week, year after year, with only a few weeks off now and then during which to rejuvenate and maintain their spirits.  I'm still somewhat lamenting the start of the new academic year though I've been back for three weeks now. Right about now in the first term is when I start getting used to it.  I hope it kicks in soon.

I rode this morning just for the fun of it - something I've not done much of since I started commuting on the scooter.  There in the middle of town, near what was once upon a time the right of way for three major railroads that ran through the city when my grandparents were coming of age, I found this engine just sitting there.

It belongs to the valley's short line that services a number of local businesses, and once a year it brings the Barnum and Bailey Circus into town.  The same set of tracks runs right behind my house and often enough I see this engine in service as it chugs up and down toward the various branches lugging boxcars and gondolas to wherever they're going. Crossing above this set of tracks out back is a main line leased by Norfolk Southern from Canadian Pacific and a number of long freight trains go through each day making the house rumble and never failing to touch my heart with their horns playing their distinctive diminished chords at jet engine volumes.  Working on the railroad always seemed like one of those romantic kinds of jobs to me.  Adventure!  Excitement!  Noise!  But, summers off?  Nah!

This old Casey Jones wannabe will stick to his BV250!


Lance said...

Great picture of your scooter looking up to the big locomotive! Hopefully you can get some good fall riding in!

Paul said...

This post reminds me of the Pioneer Valley Railroad that used to run through my hometown of Westfield Massachusetts. I'm not sure if they still make any runs...woop, apparently they still exist

Cool beans.

love trains...might be fun to work out a train yard scooter ride...To check out the various short lines around PA...there's a few in this state that I know of...I'll need a bigger scooter first, but it would take some planning anyway.

irondad said...

I agree, there's never enough time to do all the "nothing" you want to do!

Anonymous said...

Two great pics my friend...thanks for sharing them.

We have a couple of sets of tracks about a mile from our house. I LOVE to hear the trains as they pass at night.