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November 19, 2010


diane williamson

I never had a train set of my own, but I remember with fondness spending time with my dad as he played with his trains set up in a spare attic room. I remember walking along the lake path on summer days to meet and wave at the train conductor in the caboose as the train crossed the trestle. I always wondered where were the people going, much like my weekly attempts to climb the mountain to see what was on the other side, even though my father said, "Just more trees." He was right, but I had to see for myself. I remember riding the steam-driven trains into the Boston Gardens, sitting prim and proper in high-backed plush velvet seats with our tickets snug in the little pockets in the back of the seat in front of us. The day the diesel engine came to town was a grand occasion, as we all had to go downtown to see this marvel. The future was fast approaching. As we often took the elevator train to Boston, I was always a bit afraid of the train falling off the tracks and puzzled where was the engineer or was there no engineer. To me, a young girl, trains were a source of wonder and curiosity, a connection to people and places unknown, with the lull of the movement of the train and the rhythm of the wheels.
There is a sadness in the loss of these magical moments of wonderment, excitement, and a time of personal acknowledgement, as well as the slower pace in which one had time to take in and enjoy the pleasures around oneself.

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