isitors usually set me off.
When I’m running with a visitor, I see our layout through their eyes. Instead of just focusing on my little job, I look over all the peninsulas, all the moving trains, all the jobs getting done. What we’ve done is amazing, and to see it working is just phenomenal.
Tonight’s session was a hot one. We ran up through our 1000th warrant (which means the count rolls back down). Matthew was back on the panel, keeping things moving. We had Nick doing top-notch service in Martin. And all over the layout, people were pushing into new jobs and running things well.
I ran two trains, westbounds 247 and 271. The last one was already late by the time I pulled into Cincinnati, uncoupled and ran down the next track over to pick up the other freight in Bound Brook (it’s a little warp-gate thing we do. By the time 271 broke out of the tunnel for Calypso, it was already hours late. By the time I hit Martin Yard, Nick was shutting things down, the dispatcher was going home, and pretty much everyone had left. Frank and Mike hung out with me as I swept along the river route for Cincy.
And that’s when I realized that, even when I was alone, our trains were a beautiful thing. Just a sweeping line of old boxcars along a river valley, the sort of thing I dreamed of doing as a kid and now did with technology I could not have imagined. Rolled into the yard and shut down, the building still, just the low chatting of the other guys as I shut off my units and boxed them up.
So it was a good night for everyone. I got to see the magic again.