For a momentary diversion, Stephen
Wilkinson has posted a video on his Facebook page that he made last year of the
annual passing of the Polar Express, the real one.It lives in a museum now, but comes out once
a year for the famous run that has made its way to a book and movie that are
popular with kids at Christmas.
My Dad was a railroad engineer, and
started out in steam locomotives like this.I have fond memories of riding out with Mom and my brother to the
railroad crossing to hear Dad go through.He would lay on the whistle like you hear in the video.Once in a while, if he was running a freight
train and had some time, we would take a picnic lunch.He would stop the train at the crossing where
we, Dad, and the fireman would have a lunch.My brother and I could climb into the locomotive, throw a small shovel
of coal into the boiler so he could deliver the freight, then climb down as the
huge pistons began to turn the wheels and drive the train down the tracks.
This is a wonderful sound that kids
no longer have the chance to be thrilled by.Gather the kids around (regardless of age), turn the volume up, and
enjoy the experience. You will find the post on his timeline page for December 1.