I took a little longer to walk to the office this morning. Wandering around Charlottetown, coffee in hand, I was thinking about my relationship with model railroading and a few thoughts occurred to me. Most of these feel like they are probably obvious, but with over thirty years in the hobby, they just weren’t to me. I figured I’d share some of these in short posts here, just for heck of it. The first one was really what triggered the walk in the first place. I think when I’m walking. It’s how I meditate and where I find my center. I was thinking about my layout and my lack of progress on it or any of the half-assed things I tried before it.
“I really want to own an N scale layout. I want to see one in my house. I can do this. Why haven’t I? What is wrong?” I thought to myself.
I have a profoundly clear vision of what that looks like. For the life of me I can’t seem to will myself to do the work to make that happen. Further, despite my ability to fund such a venture I equally can’t will myself to just through enough money at the problem as a workaround to resolve that void. I expected a relationship in me where my desire to own something and the ability to fabricate those elements could be relied upon to energize realizing that vision. I can’t seem to translate one into the other. I’m disappointed but yet it feels like an interesting product of this introspection and that is just fine.
I still don’t need to have that finished layout ready for the magazine photo shoot but I do need it to be a platform for experimentation. I thought that establishing a grand vision would provide direction and allow me to identify elements that supported it and in turn drove the work. I think I was wrong about that and that, for me, I know what kinds of little projects I like most and that I might instinctively develop something more satisfying if I just focused on making something small, just a component. That maybe a common theme might appear in the sum of those components and from that a layout could grow. If nothing else, I’ll get something made and something done and I’d like to get back to a feeling of contributing to the hobby rather than just watching it from outside.
This morning I read a neat little tutorial on The Shortline Modelers Guild website about cast concrete and how to model it. I caught myself thinking how much I’d like to try that. I think I will. I’ve also got a nice set of plans for a B&SR water plug. Probably going to make up one of those too (actually again since I’ve already made one earlier in 1/4″ scale several years ago).
I wonder where this will take me. I haven’t a clue but it feels right and I should be smart enough to trust that instinct.