After some lengthy blog articles in the last two weeks due to plenty of picture-taking in that time in 2005, we end our look at 2005 with a thankfully brief essay; there are, mercifully, only four pictures here.
I must have stayed late at that party in New Orleans the night before, because my first picture of the day wasn’t taken until after 16:00 when the sun was about to set! In a year that saw me move away from home (but just to the metropolitan area 50 miles away), I end 2005 back home, here at Schriever, here watching the eastbound Chip Local come through.
This is Union Pacific Railroad train LLS51 – the Morgan City local out of Avondale) led once again by HLCX 3802 (which led it yesterday when I got a memorably cloudy-day picture of it.) What really caught my eye was a beautiful shiny blue boxcar with “PAN AM” written in big letters on the side with a globe logo, the first time that I saw either the “PAN AM” name or the accompanying logo (and I apparently hadn’t even seen any pictures of it yet); the reporting marks were BM. That’s Boston & Maine, meaning that this is a Guilford car.
Just before 17:00 as the sun was setting, a westbound came through led by FURX 3049, and this would be my last train of 2005.
It had loaded double-stack well cars at the beginning followed by regular freight cars. This is the first time post-Katrina that I see intermodal cars go through Schriever. I had seen some at Avondale and Live Oak, but they were all mixed with regular freight cars. The only other intermodal traffic that I photographed on the Lafayette Sub in 2005 post-Katrina was on November 22, and it was also in a westbound manifest train bound for Englewood Yard in Houston, just as this one was.
Note that both trains that I saw today were led by lease power. Maybe there is some metaphor, and maybe a cynical metaphor, that you could make out of the fact that both of the two trains that I photographed on New Year’s Eve had lease power; anyone care to give it a try?
Or, maybe you could make a cynical characterization of that fact that I even asked that question, since I apparently found it to be noteworthy, which must reflect some personality problem or mild, undiagnosed autism, as seems to be common among obsessive railroad enthusiasts.
Whatever the case, this is how I photographically ended 2005.
What a heck of a year. Moving, new job, urbanizing, Katrina, trains, Washington-DC, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Rich Mountain, Sallisaw, Maine, New Brunswick, Massachusetts, Michigan, California, and Rich Mountain again. Plenty of Louisiana trains and things no longer there. Plenty of new friends and acquaintances made, new experiences, and new skills.
One year to the day later, I’d have a much more eventful day of railroad photography, as I was in northern Nuevo León photographing activity on the Kansas City Southern de México!
As I am typing this, it is 10 years later in 2015, and I am sorry to inform you that I have decided that I will not continue this marathon of decennial retrospective blogging into 2016 for my 2006 pictures; I just don’t have the time or energy, as what I have done here in the last few months, but especially in late November and December, has sapped the life out of me, and I can’t justify continuing that now. Maybe I’ll publish the 2006 pictures in 2026, preparing them in the year or so ahead of time, but I have decided on what I think is a good compromise for the next 12 months; every month in 2016, I will make one posting of about 10 pictures from that month in 2006, a sampler of sorts.
In any event, I thank you for reading this and keeping up with it, and I wish you the warmest of new years, whenever you read this and wherever you are.