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Edition #191  February 1, 2013

Love of Trains

Photographer: Tom Granville

                                                                      Photo by Tom Granville

Love of Trains

A wave, a smile, a lifelong memory.

There aren't many things I remember about my childhood. But I do remember the day I fell in love with trains. I got to go on a cab ride with my dad and the local crew. I felt like I was the luckiest kid in the world, riding along with them, hearing the horn, feeling the engine rocking back and forth. It was a short 2 mile ride, but to me, it felt like it was a cross country run. A moment burned into my memory. From that day on, I knew that trains would be a huge part of my life. 

Fast forward almost 30 years.....I am waiting at a crossing south of Greenville to shoot Bennett Levin's Pacific Limited excursion. Before the horde of railfans descended on us, a father and his son had pulled up. The father and I got to talking, and found out that they were out on a father son day shooting the train. He told me how his son was looking forward to this day. I told the little boy "I bet if you wave to the train, the conductor will wave back." He smiled sheepishly. So we see the train coming and his dad tells him, "go over and wave". I sat down on the ground behind him and snap away. I was hoping that the conductor would wave. Otherwise, it would have been a picture of a kid waving at a machine. I see through the viewfinder, an arm appear from the cab and wave back.  I wish I would have caught the smile on the boy after he turned around. At that moment, I knew he was experiencing the same kind of moment I had experienced almost 30 years ago.

Tom Granville

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