Posts Tagged ‘trains’

Day 3 in (mostly) photos

Posted: March 28, 2020 in Uncategorized
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We left Albuquerque on a cloudy, chilly morning but with a sky filled with clouds of all sorts.

How to show motion in a photo: take a shot out the side window while doing 80 mph. Do it very carefully and delete all unusable photos.

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Trains used to play an important part of our nation’s transportation system and where there were trains, there were train depots.  One of these depots was the 1881 Wabash, St. Louis & Pacific depot from Symerton, Illinois on the line from Chicago to Decatur.  Although the depot hasn’t been used for years, the Will County Historical Society moved it board by board in 1979 to Lockport, Illinois, to be part of its Frontier Village.  We first saw it during a long bike ride we took for our anniversary last September.

© janet m. webb

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From our Chicago suburb, the preferred method of visiting the city, at least for me, is to take the Metra train into Union Station, then walk to my destination.  That’s the easy part.  Parking is the difficult part.  People who commute regularly compete for passes to park at the station.  Outside of that, parking anywhere nearby is limited to between 2-4 hours, not nearly enough to get into the city, do something, and get back.  If you arrive at the right time (after the morning rush), there are a number of $2-for-the-day spots.  I prefer having my husband drop me off and, as this sign shows, during these hours, that’s what works.  I enjoy the humor of the sign.  The shot was taken out the window as we went by, hence the fuzziness.  But it IS an oddball photo, so…

© janet m. webb 2016

Taking a photo of another train passing our train resulted in a rather cool oddball as well.

© janet m. webb 2016

The Wabash Trace Nature Trail, running through southwest Iowa from Council Bluffs to Blanchard near the border with Missouri, is 63-mile route converted from a railroad right-of-way.  Although the trail is new to me, I’ve been familiar with the song by Johnny Cash since my father used to sing it around the house, evoking the glamor of train travel in the days before Amtrak.

 “The trail’s roots go back to the Wabash Railroad, which was one of the most important connections between the farmlands, factories and people of the American heartland and points east in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Indeed, the railroad is perhaps best known for the “Wabash Cannonball,” a passenger train that connected St. Louis to Detroit and was enshrined in a popular song from the early 1900s.”
TrailLink

My experience with the trail has been much more plebian and certainly slower.  While visiting our older daughter in Shenandoah, Iowa, one of the towns through which the Trace runs, I went there for my morning walk.  The wind was as chilly as that at home, although what surrounds the Trace is very different from that of my park in a Chicago suburb!  Here there was a cemetery, fields (both harvested and with corn still waiting on the stalk), windmills of the kind on my grandparents’ farm, not the enormous, sleek high-risers of today, and other rural surroundings.  My walk, however, was as calming to the soul and as good for the body, which is, after all, why I walk.

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4:37 am

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Poetry
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             4:37 am

Drawn-out train whistle
    pulls me rudely from a dream. 
Second punctures hope of returning. 
Third
    farther away
    echoes mockingly.