I am a sucker for old, dilapidated architecture whether a building, a bridge or some form of transportation. So, it was really a no-brainer for Michael to stop the truck so I could take a few shots of what I call “The Forgotten Railroad.”
It wasn’t much more than the cab and the red caboose sitting off the main road in the town of Hartwell, Georgia. There were no historic markers, no “keep out signs” or anything to stop me from getting a few closeup shots. In fact the grassy field in front of the train was well manicured as if it was saying “come closer and take a look!”
And so while Michael patiently waited, I slipped out of the truck with my camera in tow and walked towards the abandoned structures. It was the middle of the day and the sun was extremely bright with clear skies. Not the ideal situation for lighting, but I made it work.
I would have loved to walk around the train, but the grass was tall underneath and I was trying to avoid any surprise encounters with a snake or any other stray creature. It was bad enough I had flip flops on and accidentally stepped in an ant bed!
I look at this tattered seat through the window and wonder who were the travelers? Where we they going? Was this just a local scenic train that traveled the area, or was it part of a bigger transportation system?
How many feet have climbed up on these steps and how many hands have grabbed these rails to take a ride in this cab?
And then there’s the red caboose! Can’t you just imagine the train conductor waving at the cars or pedestrians waiting patiently at the train crossing?
Too bad the red caboose has gone away with technology. Perhaps people would be a little more patient with a passing train if they new the train conductor and the red caboose would be pulling up the rear!
It you look closely, you can still see the rails of the train tracks. It’s as if they were purposefully laid there to park these last two cars.
“One thing about trains: it doesn’t matter where they’re goin’. What matters is deciding to get on!”