The tale of a beginner, or You Want me to What?

(Sound file from Doc's Mogul)

Hello, My name is Bobby. This is the story of my first (and so far only) chance to run a Live Steam locomotive. I had been interested in trains for quite awhile so when one of my friends happened to mention that he belonged to a club where they actually got to ride the models nothing was going to keep me away. Since I don't drive Paul gave me a lift to the track on one of the private run days. The folks there were quite friendly and took pains (or perhaps I was one) to explain what everything on the engines did. There were several engines running, both steam, diesel and electric and I rode them all.
There were several members getting their first locomotive operating lessons on Doc's Mogul. After lunch as I was sitting on Doc's train waiting for yet another trip around the track he came over, looked me up and down and said "I think you can do this, want to try?" I must admit to being in shock, after Paul mentioned that this was not common for nonmembers to get this chance I decided I had better take him up on it before he came to his senses.

We started with Doc walking along side after giving me a run down on the controls. I must admit that I was so excited that I did not notice at what point Doc had stopped walking and started jogging to keep up as I headed out on the main line. After cresting a hill and starting down the other side I heard Doc calling "Bobby, Stop the train, I'm 65 years old and can't keep this up for long." I thought I was in trouble, the man lets me run his engine and I almost give him a heart attack. I was all set to turn the controls over to him but he sat down in the first car and said lets go. Thinking I had been going too fast I took it slow, as we started the back straight away Doc told me to "open her up" so I gave the engine full throttle, soon we were flying at ninety, (well it felt like ninety, probably ten) with cinders hitting me in the face as the engine roared down the track.

As we came back to the station Doc let me solo again until we were back in the yard. With the sounds, smells and cinders still filling my senses I thanked Doc for letting me get a taste of running one of these engines. Now if I can just talk someone into letting me try something a bit larger (hint, hint)


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