I love model trains. When I was a kid my parents had a model train set up in the attic, and one of my favorite things to do was sit upstairs by myself amidst the dust and clutter that seem to be de riguer for an attic and watch the train travelling on its endless loop.
I am fascinated by the meticulousness that model train afficianados bring to their model train dioramas. Everyday scenes, down to the little kids playing, the person fishing, the people waiting for the trolley, is carefully laid out to tell a story. It’s insane to me the amount of effort and time that goes into building these model train dioramas, but as an artist myself I understand the passion that lays beneath the sweat and effort.
My father had two different train sets. He had an HO model train diorama as well as an O sized model train set. Both ran on the same diorama, which in retrospect is kind of odd, but then my father was an odd person. Check out my other blog www.HealingJourneyBlog.com for more on that.
I love at Christmastime when store displays have model trains running around the tree. I had a model train set like that that I bought at Toys R Us, but it was battery operated and for whatever reason it didn’t seem ‘right’ to me.
Ernie bought me an HO sized train set from Costco a few years ago. We set it up on a 4′x4′ square plywood base. I used my amateurish painting skills (my art is photography and writing) to make a flat diorama of fields of veggies and a lake. Later when we went to Big Sur on vacation, I gathered up extremely small sized gravel from the beach, and glued that to the outside of the model train tracks to make it seem more realistic.
We recently went to a train show and bought a few more cars. Bakers chocolate and a box car that at some point I’m going to glue some people to so I have hobos riding my train. My brother used to do that in his more down-and-out periods of life.
The model train show was mind boggling. There were so many different kinds of train set ups, plus there were used trains and accessories. You could go from the basic inexpensive to trains costing thousands of dollars. The range was staggering. I was in heaven. I bought some material to glue onto my diorama to make the plants have a 3-D effect.
If you find yourself in San Diego and you love model trains, you are in luck. San Diego has an entire museum dedicated to model trains. You can also find a listing of all model train shows at http://www.modeltrainshows.com/. The world’s largest model train diorama can be found in Hamburg, Germany
My model train set brings me much joy. I will sit inside my retreat reading, and turn the train on. I love the sound it makes and I dream about rail journeys to exotic places.
All photos are original and the property of Susanne Romo. If you would like to use them, please do so, but give yourself the gift of good karma and make a small donation to pretty horses rescue. This charity rehabilitates starving, abandoned horses. Every dollar helps us rescue and rehabilitate starving horses.