augury doggerel

Saturday, January 05, 2002


No train ever goes past on the track I can see through my window.

But just a little while ago, a green and yellow engine pushing a single blue car with a yellow plow mounted on its nose moved past from left to right at about 5 or 10 mph. In the trainspotting spirit, and because it was moving so slowly, I committed the engine's number -- PKP ST 44-895 -- to memory.

I saw no snow displaced by the plow; there is not that much snow on the tracks. I did see three men, probably a driver, a plow operator, and a crossing guard, all getting paid to drive a train out from the city along this lonely stretch of track among fields and trees on a sunny winter Saturday. One of them was blowing a horn like a boy would blow a train horn if you let him. Maybe it was a boy. And they let him.

They stopped for about 10 minutes at the grade road crossing just up the track, blew a louder horn than before, and then moved very slowly and carefully across the road.

A half hour later, reversing the trip, they blew the whistle, crossed the road very slowly and carefully, and stopped just on this side of the road before coming back from right to left along the track. They had no choice. This is, after all, a dead-end line.


Post a Comment

<< Home