Thursday, June 18, 2009

This train bound for....??

As most of you “regulars” know I live in a very small town in North Carolina. Our Seaboard Street has a post office, a library, a combination hardware and “5 & Dime” store plus a few unoccupied buildings. They are all on one side of the street. The other side of the street looks over the single train track that cuts through our town and is heavily wooded, as you can see in the picture.

I guess the trains have to be scheduled very carefully since there is only one track. Basically we get 3 or 4 freight trains per day and a passenger one that whips through late at night. You can never miss that one. The train whistle pierces the air announcing its arrival long before it hits our town. I love that sound!

A few days ago I was down at the Hardware store picking up some potting soil. Max, the owner, and I were outside chatting when an old CSX freight train chugged into sight. I thought it was going slower than normal but then realized that it was actually going to stop.

“What’s going on?” I asked Max, as we watched the conductor hop down from the train and scale the small hill that led to the street. “Oh, I reckon it’s lunch time”, said Max.

Sure enough, the train conductor was jogging across the street and soon disappeared around the corner. According to Max he was on his way to the “Subway” eatery located in the BP Service Station one street away. “He does this once or twice a week”, said Max ”…been going on for years.”

I was still trying to take this all in when the man reappeared carrying a large bag with the “Subway” logo on it. He had a big grin on his face and was thoroughly enjoying himself. “Top of the morning to you, Max” he called.

He then disappeared over the edge of the bank and a few seconds later we saw him board the train. As the idling engine gained speed he stuck his head out and gave us a last wave. “Now there goes a man who loves his job” I thought and the sheer audacity of his actions made me laugh.


Blogger Anvilcloud said...

How weird is that? We have a railway line too, but it's not being used since the recession. It is owned by one company but mostly used by another that no longer wants to pay the tolls.

7:19 PM  
Blogger KGMom said...

Oh, what a great story. Trains once ruled the land--sad that day has gone. Nice to know some places still have trains chugging through (and sometimes stopping).

7:35 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

HA. I wonder if his employers know he stops like that? And does it hamper his schedule in any way?

8:25 PM  
Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

Our little town had a rail line running down its main street, too. At one time the railroad was the best way to get here. The general store in town used to fill orders for groceries to go up the line on the train to remote camps. Now this main CN line has been torn up. The rail cut is now used as a trail for hiking, snowmobiling and four wheeling. It is slated to become part of the Trans-Canada Trail. It is not the same to hearing the train rumble through.

3:04 AM  
Blogger Cazzie!!! said...

I would so love to be a train driver, of a big old locomotive, full steam ahead :)

5:35 AM  
Blogger RoyalTLady said...

Hi Ginnie,

I hope this train carries you and bound for Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia!!!

7:57 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

That is cool. I like trains. I guess the days of train jumping are over. Never did that but the sound of the train whistle is haunting to me and I wonder where they are going. The romantic in me wants to jump on board.

12:20 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Your town looks a lot like the little northeast Texas town where I grew up. The train has not gone through it in at least 20 years and the tracks have been removed. I think it is on the Rails to Trails program.

7:30 PM  

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