Saturday, September 20, 2008

Blue caboose

Scott got an e-mail this week from a Bentley administrator inviting faculty and staff on a train ride. Specifically, a ride on a restored 1913 (or thereabouts) Boston & Maine wooden caboose. Bring the kids, food on board, etc. It's a two-hour ride up to New Hampshire where the train is, but we figure, hey, this sounds like a lot of fun. And Scott has always wanted to ride in a caboose.

Turns out? The administrator and her husband own the caboose. It had been damaged by a fire during a railroad strike, and they took the time to restore it and get it operational again, and it's absolutely darling. Bright blue, big B&M logo on the side, shipshape inside painted white with blue cushions on the seats. There are seats at the front, a small galley area, then benches along the sides that double as beds. At the very middle there are built-in ladder rungs that go up to the top of the cupola, where there are two facing seats on either side. We ended up sitting in one side of the cupola — just enough space for the four of us — and the girls happily munched on cookies and sandwiches and drained their juice boxes.

Beth was a bit nervous at first about the open windows (oh my, the view!), while I was keeping one arm around Sarah to make sure she didn't dive headfirst out of hers. But Beth got over her fears:

Sarah, sick of me hanging onto her waist while she stuck her head puppylike out the window, decided the cupola was boring and the main level (and resident Cocker Spaniel) would be much more fun:

She also made friends with a six-year-old girl who mother-henned her quite well, tried (unsuccessfully) to get out to the observation deck, and waved out the window at a train we passed along the way. Scott asked the caboose owners' daughter if her dad had always had trains. "Yeah," she said. "They've just gotten bigger."


Gigi said...

I love the picture of Bethie with her head out the window. Sarah looks so happy with the puppy. In order to further my niece's cultural and social development, I'll buy them a puppy. :)

Marcia said...

Fun! I keep thinking someday I'll take the kids on the Heber Creeper but they want an arm and a leg to get tickets to ride it. I'll just let them look at trains that pass our house for now.

Rebecca said...

How fun!! Who owns a caboose?? That is something to aspire to! Does he have his own track as well?