Memoirs

Driving A Diesel Locomotive

Posted in Memoirs

Somewhere back in the late 80’s while working at Imperial Printing in Charlotte, North Carolina, I happened to mention to a fellow worker (Calvin) that I had a nice Model Railroad in my apartment. As the conversation went on, Calvin told me he also worked at the Norfolk Southern rail yards and to drop by some night for a tour of some cool stuff. Of course I took him up on the offer and when I arrived he proceeded to take me onto a GM Electric Diesel locomotive, actually there were two of them connected to each other. He showed me into the generators and drive train compartments and then into the cab where the big beast was driven from. After explaining the “dead mans pedal” to me, he told me to have a seat. Before I knew it, Calvin had the thing started up and let me drive the engines forward about 100 yards and then reverse it back and complete a coupling of a line of boxcars waiting to be moved to a new location. That was definitely one of life’s adventures I will truly never...

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Biography – Commercial Printing Journeys

Posted in Memoirs

When I was in High School and had the opportunity to attend the vocational school located in the same building, I jumped on the offer and signed on for “Graphic Arts” class. Since I was already taking the maximum of art classes in my regular curriculum, I figured it was just an additional “art” class I could take. When I had my first day of class and saw all the printing presses, I realized it was a bit more than “art” but still had an interest in learning the craft. There was also a darkroom for processing of litho film and making negatives of the work to be printed. Since I already had my own film photography darkroom at home, I figured this would give me a slight edge on the rest of the class. The teacher saw a quick advancement in my abilities and quickly moved me from the bookwork into the darkroom and onto the presses. I was able to learn a AB Dick 360, Multilith 1250, Chandler & Price Letterpress, Ludlow Lead Typesetter and assorted bindery equipment. Even before the first year of class was completed I applied and got a job running the letterpress department at Modern Press. I had at my disposal a set of 3...

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The Adventure To Pisa

Posted in Memoirs, Photo Journeys

Out of all the adventures from 30 days in Europe, one that took a lot of blind faith and confidence in my adventure skills was the trip to the Tower of Pisa. Leaving the ship onto the shores of Livorno, Italy after my usual morning breakfast in the Veranda restaurant, I walked about 10 minutes into town to the bus stop and got aboard bus #4. I knew from the ship staff that bus 4 would take me to the train station. And so I find myself on bus 4 and for about one euro I rode for about fifteen minutes or so to the train station in Livorno. Not knowing a single word of the Italian language, I did have some concerns about me actually arriving at the tower without any difficulties. It was pretty easy to figure out which bus stop was the train station since the bus pretty much emptied out when we stopped there. Like the rest of the passengers I proceeded into the terminal and was wowed by its age and historic appearance and the visions of train traffic from the many years it has seen began to run through my head. Overhead hung a large board with information on departures and arrivals much...

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Gwad Loop or Gwad Loop Aye

Posted in Memoirs, Photo Journeys

I have always thought that Guadeloupe was pronounced with a “loop ay” sound at the end, but down here they actually just say the last part “loop”. Actually if you were to ask me before this cruise where on the globe that Guadeloupe even was at, I would have been at a loss for an answer. You will notice in todays photo snippits that I did not post a breakfast pic since right at breakfast time for me this morning (about 8AM) a sudden rain blew threw and I ate inside the Veranda Restaurant instead of outside. But it did blow by quickly and I was on the deck of the boat enjoying the slow cruise into the harbor for a noon arrival. This island was the most indigenous as far as shopping goes, than all the ones before. The shops were filled with a lot of tie-died stuff and crafts made by the residents. And most of them didn’t even take U.S. dollars, but of course credit cards were ok. Since we got there right at noon, the place was pretty well closed up till 2:30 or 3, as for they take lunch break from noon to 3… yes the whole island does except for a few eateries....

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