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The Night Mail


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7 minutes ago, Happy Hippo said:

To keep the Midland Brigade on side, here is a picture of a Midland Interlude at Splott West Sidings, albeit rather modern image for their tastes.DSC_0023_(1).JPG.1c1447264c0178f014c6e09edb0c141f.JPG

A rat and a gronk.. Where's the muddy hollow.

 

Jamie

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1 minute ago, jamie92208 said:

A rat and a gronk.. Where's the muddy hollow.

 

Jamie

It's the other end of the yard, but being Splott, it doesn't have a resident hippo, but a half submerged 55 gallon oil drum instead.

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8 hours ago, Happy Hippo said:

I will report back after I have carried out the contortionist's training, as the crack was on the side of the bath nearest the wall, and I will need to get underneath the bath to put a layer of waterproof sealant on the outer face of the bath under where the track was, just in case.

 

Ah, Happy Hippo, is that a Freudian slip, or an admission that you were experimenting with hitherto unexplored possibilities for a hidden siding?  I assume you must be using steel track and 'magnehesion' to keep stock on the rails?

 

Remind me - what percentage strength was that cider I just downed?

 

Steve S

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1 minute ago, SteveyDee68 said:

 

Ah, Happy Hippo, is that a Freudian slip, or an admission that you were experimenting with hitherto unexplored possibilities for a hidden siding?  I assume you must be using steel track and 'magnehesion' to keep stock on the rails?

 

Remind me - what percentage strength was that cider I just downed?

 

Steve S

I can't spell before 1630 in the afternoon!

 

Are you a cider aficionado, or was it all you had left in the cupboard?

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6 minutes ago, Happy Hippo said:

Neil is that a Caledonia?

 

It does look the part in the BR mixed traffic livery, which I believe was a throwback to the L&NWR

 

Yes it's a Cale, but it is in L&L Livery - the crest has the legs of Man on it and my railway's name - I presume BR copied it.  Don't have a close up handy, sorry.  Custom made by 'The Decal Man' Chris Moxham, a friend.  Loco was painted by my own paw with high temp bike paint, and BBQ paint for the matt bits, lining is again transfers by Chris.  It's a bit fast for my little railway with the big wheels, but does look nice.  Powerful loco too.

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1 hour ago, AngusDe said:

Facebook is one of the sites I do read on my phone, and it reminded me today, 9 years ago, was Catherine's first session of chemotherapy at the Western in Edinburgh, which reminded me, not that I'd forgotten, I'm back there myself for my next dose of immunotherapy this week coming. It's now 6 years since Catherine passed away and when I started my own treatment I was amazed how many of the nurses and doctors I recognised, I'd always assumed they'd 'burn out' sooner rather than later, but obviously not, they're all heroic really. Catherine was always rather scared of needles, had terrible veins and had several Central and Hickman lines, non of which were very successful and her whole cancer journey was rather miserable. In comparison, my journey (so far) has been a breeze, no symptoms of the kidney cancer at all, and side effects of the treatment have been irritating rather than debilitating, but there's always that "but you've got stage 4 cancer" message tannoying in the back of your head. Anyway my favourite distraction is always a few hours on RMweb or AnyRail so I'm here.

 

Angus

 

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Angus.  I read stories like your own, and I feel thoroughly embarrassed by my own squeamishness/phobia. And every time I need to give blood for a test (which has just reminded me ... I used a busy surgery reception to dodge booking my blood test from my last visit ... ahem ... about 6 months ago!) or visit the dentist, I give myself a stern talking to, have a reasoned discussion in my head about it all being in my mind, then walk into whichever room, and logic and reason stay outside - and the lizard part if my brain takes over so that option (a) is fight (and I'm a pacifist at heart) and (b) is flight!

 

Steve S

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If I remember correctly, John Turner used to make  a version of the Caledonia, and it was quite spritely.  To curb it's tendency to gallop away it was fitted with an exhaust regulator which was situated in the smoke box, and controlled by a screw valve which was disguised as the smokebox dart.

 

I mentioned about a similar device to Douglas (Florence LW) over on ERs a few days back.

 

I'm going to have a look at your Cokeford diagram tomorrow: After which I'll need a long lie down in the hollow!

 

 

Edited by Happy Hippo
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Right, Phobias. Heights immediately springs to mind, but not that bad. I had one for years about never falling asleep, or falling asleep but at a very late time. Thankfully tis gone now, but I still have a small fear of heights. Oh and bad drivers, but then again who doesn’t.

 

I had some rather excellent French Toast for brunch today, unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures so I can’t prove that I did. Then I went to the grandparents house and sat outside in blazing heat talking for a few hours, and rewound the clock picture below, which took a good half hour.

 

This morning about 90% of the internal structure of the tunnel on “Box Tunnel” was made, using the cardboard lattice strips method that was featured in a Bob Symes video on YouTube. Next up will be the embankments, well really one embankment and the corner of the another. 
 

Douglas

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BA35FA75-D6F8-417E-9E14-A61763757674.jpeg

Edited by Florence Locomotive Works
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21 minutes ago, Happy Hippo said:

I can't spell before 1630 in the afternoon!

 

Are you a cider aficionado, or was it all you had left in the cupboard?

 

Definitely the former! :laugh_mini2:

 

I have been told in the past that I am not allowed to get involved with the local heritage line (the marvelous East Lancs Railway) due to an aversion to all forms of beer, whether cheap and nasty lager or rich and lovely real ale.  However, as The Trackside sells a range of craft ciders, I think maybe that no longer applies!

 

I've only ever drunk cider and spirits, although there was a period of my life between the ages of 17 and 40 that I couldn't handle cider - half a pint and I would be legless! Only time I have ever drunk beer (to be accurate, Indian lager) was on my stag do several years ago, and only because I was told it was 'traditional'!  After an evening of vodka mixers, arrival at the Indian curry house coincided with rounds of drinks - whisky, rum, vodka, Tia Maria (don't ask!), Bailey's and finally a pint of lager - my first! I drank it, complaining about the taste the whole time! Another round (of brandy) and then another of lager - of which I have no recollection but which I apparently downed in one go!

 

Only occasion in my life I have ever thrown up from drinking!

 

So, cider it is, plus rum (especially spiced rums!), port, wine and my tipple of favour since introduced to it in France aged 14, cognac!

 

Though not usually all at the same time! :laugh_mini2:

 

Steve S

Edited by SteveyDee68
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As you probably realise mine is an Accucraft Cale, Richard.  There's not many R/C ones around, those that are would have been (edit - 'mostly') done by myself or Dave.  Despite its size it isn't an easy fit.

 

The Turner/Lindale ones are.....problematic. The wheels fall off.

Edited by New Haven Neil
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When I was on Ex Lionheart in 1984, I took a bottle of rum and a very large fruitcake with me.

 

At the end of each day, I conducted a quick round up of the days events, with my tech team which comprised  a WO II, two Sgts  and the CQMS (Always a useful man to be on the right side of.)

 

At the end of the first round up I produced the Rum and the  fruitcake.

 

It was amazing how many of the SNCOs found an excuse to come to my daily round up once the word got out.

 

After the first week I had to get a message home for more cake!

 

Fortunately two came back, as did more rum.

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16 minutes ago, SteveyDee68 said:

 

Only occasion in my life I have ever thrown up from drinking!

 

So, cider it is, plus rum (especially spiced rums!), port, wine and my tipple of favour since introduced to it in France aged 14, cognac!

 

Though not usually all at the same time! :laugh_mini2:

 

Steve S

I can't claim to have only thrown up once from drinking. Rather more often than that. Though once was after many pints of Watneys Red Barrel and I was still sober but standing partly in the Thames.  However Cognac. Our house is within the Cognac region but we don't grow grapes, yet.  However 10 miles from us is Jean Balluet's distillery. His cognac is very smooth, dark and almost creamy. The only drawback us that the other half likes it as well so bottles seem to go down rather quickly.  Going to visit to buy some is an experience  and you need to have a designated driver in the car.  Anyone forva brandy breakfast.

 

Jamie

Edited by jamie92208
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On 02/07/2020 at 20:59, Happy Hippo said:

'This is the night mail crossing the Border,
Bringing the cheque and the postal order,

Letters for the rich, letters for the poor,
The shop at the corner, the girl next door.'..................WH Auden

 

 

Which reminds me... I set this to music (my own, not that cacophony that chap Britten penned for the film!) when studying for my music degree some 30 years ago.  I was inspired by "Coronation Scot" and by "The Worth Valley Railway" (from "Three Haworth Impressions") but it remained unfinished because the poem breaks away from rhyming or even from a sense of rhythm/pulse, and my adaptation (or paraphrasing) to make it fit was frowned upon by my composition tutor. Mind you, it was at a time when melody and tonality were rather out of favour, the academics prefering the more 'avant garde' scribblings of my peers; the more outrageous the methodology used to select values, the more pretentious the reasoning behind their compositions, the more valued! My honest answer to "Why did you write that?" was always along the lines of "It sounds right" or "I liked it that way" ... when my peers performed their pieces, I always asked how they felt they went - I remember one piece all three performers - including the composer - admitting they had got lost and didn't know where they were up to! (That person won the composition prize that year - go figure!)

 

Mind you, how many of those 'clever' composers had their entry for a composition performed on TV?! (Where's the smug emoji?!l)

 

This thread has prompted me to revisit that piece - I'll have to dig out my old files and see if perhaps I can finish it?! After all, I am not planning on visiting the pubs for a while yet, despite Mr Johnson's assurances that it is safe to do so!!

 

Steve S

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11 minutes ago, jamie92208 said:

I can't claim to have only thrown up once from drinking. Rather more often than that. Though once was after many pints of Watneys Red Barrel and I was still sober but standing partly in the Thames.  However Cognac. Our house is within the Cognac region but we don't grow grapes, yet.  However 10 miles from us is Jean Balluet's distillery. His cognac is very smooth, dark and almost creamy. The only drawback us that the other half likes it as well so bottles seem to go down rather quickly.  Going to visit to buy some is an experience  and you need to have a designated driver in the car.  Anyone forva brandy breakfast.

 

Jamie

 

Oh! Paint me jealous!!

 

My former teacher and colleague visits Cognac every year during the summer - I shall have to check with him about thhe name of his friend who has a distillery and which he says is the most wonderful cognac!  What are the chances of it being the same?!

 

My introduction to cognac (not brandy!) was as a breakfast drink, strangely enough! Visiting Angueleme with the youth orchestra I was a member of, myself and my room buddy joined a trip organised to a local distillery for everyone who wasn't boarded with families (it was a "family day" where you stayed with your hosts).  My host family were firmly on the "bizarrely eccentric" side of behaviour, so Stephen (my room buddy, and coincidentally my doctor's son!) and I decided to join the trip instead of staying with our hosts.  As a result, we had had no breakfast. After the obligatory tour, we reached the tasting suite, where cognac and an aniseed like drink were on offer. When I declined by explaining I had not had any breakfast, the chap said he would fix us both a breakfast drink to give us the best start to the day - and promptly filled a tall tumbler with ice, half a glass of cognac and half of fresh orange juice!  Aged 14, no breakfast, I drank that and thought it heavenly! So good that when he offered a second glass, we both accepted! I don't really remember much of the rest of the day, except that we played an outside concert where it felt very natural to sway along to the music!!

 

For years, I only drank cognac and declined to buy rounds of drinks as a student because the cost of my drink could buy three pints of beer - and so I always felt it was a little unfair to expect others to buy that! (Remember, I couldn't drink cider at the time!!)

 

Strangely enough, I now have the urge to pour myself a nice glass of cognac!

 

Cheers!

 

Steve S

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Redheads and needles.

 

As I've mentioned before and elsewhere, No 1 son is autistic and red/ginger haired. No 2 son is also ginger, we think it's a gene echo from their maternal grandfather's line.

 

Anyhow, No 1 son, C2, had to have, quite a few years ago, a dental extraction. Not having had one before, but knowing he'd not cope with being awake, a general anesthetic was used. This consisted of an anesthetic injection into a butterfly valve already in his hand. 

All went well and that was that.

 

Several years later he developed a condition resulting in an emergency orchidectomy. This was a trip to the local GP followed by immediate hospital admission. The staff were several degrees above excellent, they knew about his autism and even arranged for the specialist nurse to be on hand to help explain, to C2, what was happening. 

So they swabbed his hand, put the anesthetic cream on with a gauze patch, ready for the butterfly valve. C2 played along right up to the bit where they were to put the needle in. He remembered it hurt the time before and not, under any circumstances,  was he going to experience that again. A pre-med tablet did nothing, so it was down to a gas & air mask.

Having to help to hold him down whilst the mask was held in place long enough and seeing the pleading look in his eyes - it is not an experience I will ever forget. 

 

Blood donating.

Yes, when they insert the needle, it can hurt. Yes, as the needle is in your arm and the tube is taped, the angle it is at can cause a bruise and ache.

But, I look away at the right moment and think about layout plans or making buildings or anything to not concentrate on what's actually happening. And 10 minutes later it's all over. I've done 50+, so far.

It hurts, but only for a second and it's not really that bad at all.

Edited by Stubby47
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I am also finding myself drawn more to railway poetry as I age.

'From a Carriage Window' has long been a favourite,  but 'The Night Mail' is renewal of a childhood memory whilst 'Adlestrop' is a recent find.

 

I'd love some more recommendations of similar verse.

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