Thursday, September 9, 2010

Looking Under the Hood


This morning I made the trek up to Fremont, CA on a self-imposed recon mission to photograph the engine. The old locomotive that I’d seen on previous train trips and then pinpointed its location through Google Earth. (For more details see The Engine Is Found, from June of this year). I hoped to be able to document in greater detail the engine that had captivated my consciousness for so many moments.

I looked again at Google Earth to map out my directions, wrote them down, and then, after breakfast, set out for my destination. I was familiar with this part of Fremont because it is where we usually catch the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), either to go to the Oakland Coliseum for sporting events (mainly Oakland Raider games, although not so much recently) or continue on into San Francisco for an assortment of activities (sporting events, fireworks, plays, concerts, etc.). So I’d taken this exit off the freeway a number of times. And the directions were simple enough, and I knew that the tracks were accessible from a nearby cross-road.

I arrived and scoped the location, surveying for a parking spot. Then I parked, and proceeded, with my camera, to where the engine was supposed to be. Sure enough, it was there, and most likely still is. I mean, it’s only been a couple hours since I was there– and seeing how it hasn’t moved in more than three years since I’ve been tracking it down…

Anyway. It’s there alright. Completely neglected, it’s been tagged by disrespectful types who’ve no capacity for honoring history. Rust erosion has eaten holes in many of its surfaces. And it is entwined with some sort of bush/weed that effectively blocks it from sight. Had I rode the train for the first time only a couple months ago, I may never have even seen it.

So I snapped a few pics, and I’ll include them here, but know that the mission was far from a success. It was a disappointment. But maybe there’s somebody out there with an idea for me or for the engine and what could be done to save it from neglect and ultimate destruction…

I’m all ears.

Thanks for reading, commenting, thinking, honoring. May you be blessed in your journeys.

5 comments:

Deb said...

It's really great that you went to locate the engine. I'm sorry you were disappointed, but now you have a new journey. Finding a way to preserve the train will be interesting. If it were up to me, I think I'd start locally. See if anyone at the train station in Santa Clara can give you tips. If that fails, you can always make a call to the train museum in Sacramento. Whatever you decide, keep writing. I'm on this particular train ride with you.

Gerri said...

It looks like there is a garage of some type next to the engine, and it appears to be fenced off. Perhaps you can determine who owns the land where it sits. They may have plans for it.

Just a thought...

(t)om said...

Tell me why I should care. What is it about this train that merits preservation? What's the story?

Miclaundry said...

Mr. D-sham-- You should care because I'm writing about it! No, I get what you're saying. You're saying I gotta research this thing more. Well, we'll just hafta see about that. Plenty of leads, stay tuned...

(t)om said...

No, I mean, what is compelling you to research it in the first place? What is it that compels you now, before you've researched it?