A Streetcar Named…

It’s been a long time since The Farmer starred in our blog.

He’s an unassuming fellow who has the ability to slip into a room utterly undetected until I feel his breath on the back of my neck (you think I’d learn, but I still scream) before, conversely, reducing the room to a chaos of barking dog, shrieking Farm Girl, blasting music (“Alexa, play Head and Heart“), and laughter. Here on the Homestead, it doesn’t get much better than when his two work rosters coincide to give him a day off and he’s joined by his collaborator and cohort, The Princess (and that’s not just because it guarantees spirited games of Jackbox after dinner). Yep, he’s funny and cheeky, respectful and irreverent, focused and stubborn, and one of those fuss-free folk who go about their life, sure in the direction they’re heading.

When he was 13 and we were new to Christchurch, he was introduced to CSMEE/Halswell Miniature Trains. It was love at first sight and despite it being about the furtherest suburb you could get from the then Homestead, despite us not being able to commit to the weekly trek across town to drop him off, despite The Bean Counter’s and my misgivings at our small-town boy negotiating the two buses necessary to get there, despite it all…it became one of those definite direction in life things and we found ourselves agreeing to The Farmer hopping on the bus each Sunday for the buzz of driving little trainloads of passengers around the often windswept, summer-sunbaked Halswell Domain. I used to be embarrassed to not share his passion for this (“What kind of mother are you?”), but my embarrassment has never been enough to prompt me to regularly share it with him and, in one of those rare Mother-Son exchanges that happen out of nothing, he just couldn’t work out why I’d feel like that. After all, I just wasn’t into trains.

Nowadays, he drives himself to Halswell Domain (in his pride and joy, another of those definite direction in life things) and one recent Sunday he came home radiating an air of quiet satisfaction. Without ceremony or hoopla, discussion or debate, he had bought himself a train…of his very own! Why were we surprised?

On Saturday, we all ventured out to check out the new addition to the family.

Meet Blanche…the perfect name for a miniature, red streetcar.

He’s now working on assembling the equipment required to transport Blanche (in his pride and joy pictured above, rear) to the various different club open days around the country.

It’s all part of the definite-direction-in-life plan.

20 thoughts on “A Streetcar Named…

  1. I remember a post or two about Farmer driving the trains, also all of you having to travel on certain trains in Europe at his behest. How wonderful to own one himself! For many years, a place down the road from me operated as a B&B and it’s special schtick was that it had a miniature train running around the property (2 acres). Sorry i’m going to disappoint Farmer by not knowing important deets like gauge, number of cars, etc – but we had visitors one year who stayed there and got to ride it – and loved it. Not to put ideas into anyone’s head or anything….

    • Having a track here on the Homestead is his absolute dream. Its not one shared by the rest of us – particularly those Homesteaders who actually feel their home is their castle and would install a crocodile infested moat and drawbridge to keep “other folk” out if they could.
      The ICE Train was one we had to travel in whilst overseas…but we would all agree thats different; travelling in real trains is fantastic. Sitting behind a little one…hmmmm….😁

  2. That is just too cool, What a awesome Mum you are all those tricky traveling adventures. There should have been balloons & confetti & a ribbon cutting ceremony, how cool. Love the name Blanche, now tracks around the property to help carry feed to all the menagerie.

  3. Good for him! I hope he has many years enjoyment out of his new train. I see Tom has suggested a track round the Homestead. My husband wanted to build a track for a miniature train round our garden when we moved here but he eventually became aware that I wasn’t as keen on the idea as he was. What a spoil-sport I am!

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