was rolling out of Easton on 613 in the early evening, having spotted the day’s final cars. Gave two toots to the line of glowing windows along the tower’s second floor, acknowledging the green boards I had back to Tuscarora. Ben was doing a bang-up job as the new towerman.
Better than I was doing as an engineer on the Easton Turn, it seemed. I only got five miles when I realized I’d missed picking up a car. Called the dispatcher on the callbox for a quick return to pick up a pennsy box. We all have our off nights.
Fortunately there wasn’t a lot of traffic. The local coal mines had suffered wildcat strikes and the east coal hauls were all annulled. That’s kinda what happens on the Tuscarora when you have a four-person session and someone doesn’t show.
But since traffic was light, it was a great time for Ben Rudy to lean the panel. I ran tower for the first trick and then switched jobs with him. He took about ten minutes to get the simple rules figured out. By the end of the session, I’d tell him I’d need to run around and clank-clank-clank, turnouts would line and signals go green and off I’d go. He agrees – once you do it for a bit, it all makes sense. But he’s a good guy for stepping up to the levers and giving them a throw.
And thanks to Dispatcher Greg for making a simple slip reflect an hour and a half late running. Hell has no fury like a smarmy dispatcher with a flip clock.
But fun all the same. See you guys next week!
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