Obsessed with Scale Models

10 Feb

I’m obsessed with model making, I freely admit it. I guess it’s just a guy thing, it all started with my first train set. which my father [also obsessed] built when I was two years old on the premise it was for me. What a liar it was for HIM. None the less he passed the obsession to me. He loved that train set more than life itself. I have very distant memories of him teaching me how to run it, I couldn’t have been more than five or six. That layout in the basement was his passion, it had grass, gravel under the tracks and a mountain tunnel,which was his favorite feature. In retrospect it was crude by today’s standards, but the loco puffed smoke by means of little white pills you dropped in the stack [a feature no longer in vogue] he used to let me drop them in, what a thrill that was, the puffing New York Central speeding around the  horseshoe curve leaving a smoke trail in its wake, whistle sounding and Dad at the rheostat making sure it didn’t derail on its circular journey back to where it started.

I wish Dad was still with us to see the advances made in scale modeling. Current layouts are nothing like our little world in the basement fifty years ago. This one in-particular, an airport, with landing planes! One of Dads favorite pass times was a car ride for Frosty Freeze and a parking space on the perimeter of the Cleveland Hopkins Airport to watch the arrivals and departures, he also loved airplanes. An advance in transportation technology that occurred during his lifetime. This layout would have left him speechless, but nothing will ever replace the smoke pills in our Lionel.

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