Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

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Riding the Rails

Today is Lisa and my wedding anniversary. Lisa decided that we should go out to the Oregon Electric Railway Museum this afternoon. She goes there regularly (we're members), although of course I'm not there often. Plenty of people were at work on various projects, but there were no riders this afternoon. Lisa, who is certified to operate the equipment, got permission to take the Sydney car out of the barn and take me for a ride around the museum trackage. So we went out to the far end of the line. Lisa walked me through reversing the poles on the car -- I'm pleased to say that I got the pole to line up with the wire on my first attempt -- and we headed back in.

Near the car barn, one of the museum members flagged us down. There was a piece of equipment on the car that he needed -- a gauging pole used to make sure that the overhead wire is at the correct height. Lisa and he began talking technical issues about electrical bonds on the rails and so forth when another older member of the museum came rolling up on an electric cart. "We thought you were coming back! Are you derailed?" he asked.

I explained that there was no problem, but that there was a technical discussion going on. He was not happy, as a group of people had shown up wanting to ride, but when we didn't come back as expected, they left because they had a plane to catch. That's lost revenue. He made me feel so guilty that I put enough in the donation box to make up for the lost ridership. (Lisa and I don't have to pay for rides because we're already dues-paying museum members.)

We then took the car back to the station and then walked back to the car barn, where we discussed the renovation of Muni car 1213. Time has been unkind to this car, and it's been stored outside too much, so it's covered with rust. Volunteers are in the process of trying to grind off as much rust as possible. Some areas are beyond saving and will have to be cut out and new sheets of steel welded into place.

After a while, we left and headed back to Salem for lunch at Sizzler. Unfortunately, lunch didn't agree with Lisa at all and it was an unpleasant drive for her back to Mehama. She sent me over to her father's house while she attempts to recover from the bad lunch.
Tags: lisa, trains

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