Wednesday, December 21, 2011




     A few days after Christmas , a mother was working in the kitchen listening to her son playing with his new electric train in the living room. She heard the train stop and her son said , " All of you sons of bitches who want off,get the hell off now ,cause this is the last stop ! . And all you sons of bitches who are getting on , get your asses in the train , cause were leaving ! " .

The mother went in and told her son , " We don't use that kind of language in this house.Now go to your room and you are to stay there for TWO HOURS.When you come out , you may play with your train , but I want you to use nice language " .

Two hours later , the son came out of the bedroom and resumed playing with his train . Soon the train stopped and the mother heard her son say , " All passengers who are disembarking the train , please remember to take all of your belongings with you . We thank you for riding with us today and hope your trip was a pleasant one . We hope you will ride with us again soon " .

She heard the little boy continue , "For those of you boarding we ask you to stow all of your hand luggage under the seat . Remember there is no smoking on the train except in the club car .We hope you will have a pleasant and relaxing journey with us today ".

Then the child added , For all those of you pissed off about the TWO HOUR delay ,please see the bitch in the kitchen " .


                          No animals or trains where injured during the making of this story.

Monday, December 12, 2011


Having to travel to Ballarat recently for  business and ever mindful of my carbon footprint.I don't usually have a carbon footprint anyhow as I drive everywhere ! I decided to turn it into a very large train ride.I know Julia and Bob will be so proud of me.
 They say that a journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step .Well in my case it was a bus ride to Armidale on Sunday morning at 0720 hrs, Good to get that out of the way first.Then onto the Country Link Explorer service to Sydney.

A good chance to see country that has had a great season and also not usually seen from the road.First item of interest where some tanker containers in the Fielders yard at Tamworth in a bright yellow colour  different to what I have seen before and different to the decals available from Gwydir Valley Models. 

Then onto Werris Creek where the Moree section is amalgamated for the remainder of the journey.Planning to get out and record the action while trying to get out the door I nearly ran over John Curry trying to come in the door.The people you meet on a train station.

The section from Moree is on the left ,while the Armidale section is on the right.The Moree train comes around to couple onto the front of the Armidale train before heading of to Sydney at 1129 hrs

Travelling along having my ordered hot meal and counting the coal trains.Which was all very enjoyable we arrived on time at Central at 1700 hrs
With a short break before the departure of the overnight XPT to Melbourne at 2040 hrs.It was off to Town hall for a feed at the favorite Pub.And then back for departure.
Finding my sleeping birth and having it all to myself i sat back to eat my welcome pack of nibbles as we moved out of Sydney ,Then off for a shower before sitting up in bed with the lights out watching  the Southern Highlands roll past.I didn't see much past Exeter .Damn sleep fairies got me.

 Waking in the morning to my delivered breakfast before showering and arriving on time at 0735 .The fantastic Southern Cross Station certainly makes Central look very old and tired !
But I must say what a totally civilized way to travel between the centre of 2 state capitals

With Monday free it was of to Bendigo to see Mckenzie No 1 .for some signalling updates.Travelling there and back by the Velocity train service which is very good also.
Question No 1 . Travelling back towards Melbourne on the northern side of the train just after Melton Station between the 1st and 2nd level crossing there looked for all the world like a stored rail gas tanker in an industrial yard near the line.Could this be true or just wish full thinking ?
Then onto another Velocity service to Ballarat.Where I had to catch a taxi ,There where no trains to the conference centre !
The conference finished on Thursday afternoon so caught the train back to Melbourne checked into the accommodation before catching a tram out to Train world arriving with only 10 minutes before closeing time a quick look and back to the city for dinner.

The rail yards of Melbourne where very interesting to see from the train with one thing standing out for any modern era modellers .The graffiti covered wagons .
Friday morning was very exciting as I was catching the daylight XPT service back to Sydney a good chance to see a lot of railway territory not usually scene by me .And on the way down I was snoring !.
The overnight XPT was 1 hour late getting in which meant our departure which uses the same train was 1 hour late.No big deal we have all day to make that up the fool said to himself.

                                           Some high tech procedures before departure

The trip back was good apart from trucks overtaking us on the Hume Highway ,that's a bit embarrassing when your supposed to be in the XPT. I thought all those stories about the poor track upgrade work where just a media beat up .But even on the long straight flat bits the trucks rolled by.

Question No 2 At Henty is that a curved roof goods shed ?

We eventually arrived into Sydney if you could call it that 2 hours of the pace.Saturday morning was raining but an early start to visit Toms then Bergs and the ARHS book shop .
Of interest in Clyde yard was the heavy load wagons NZZA with No 6 beam still painted in the black and yellow colors I last saw it in last.
Then out to catch the Flight to Brisbane which was also 1 hour late so its not just trains.