Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Train School (SOTC 163/365)

My photography club had a meet-up at the Alberta Railway Museum last weekend. I hadn't even known this place existed until the event was planned. I am not one of those people who loves trains, but after spending a couple hours at the museum, I could start to get a sense of why there are some who are those people.

In my brain, I generally envision four kinds of train cars: engines, cabooses, passenger cars, and freight cars. It doesn't even cross my mind that of course there must be other types of cars to hold the people that keep a train running. At the museum, I moved in and out of all sorts of train cars that I'd never thought about or known existed: kitchen cars, bunker cars for train workers, cars for animals, office-type cars, and the medic/first aid car.

But this.

Train School I (SOTC 163/365)

I stepped in the back entry, and before I even came to the full realization of what I was looking at, I loved this car.

It's the instructional car.

Teaching happens here.

True, not the teaching of K-12 students. Workers would receive their training in this car. Which makes sense. Those of us who work in offices have board rooms, or attend conferences in hotels, to receive training. But if you're working on the Canadian National Railway, ever-moving across the country, where else would you go!?

I think part of the reason I love this car so much is that it's evidence of learning. I realized, in discovering this car, that I held some negative connotations towards the working environment of train employees--probably because of the way some of those who were employed to build railways were historically treated. I viewed working on the rails like working in mines--dirty, dangerous, underpaid, with uneducated employees.

Clearly that is not the case--at least here.

I stood in a space where learning happened, and my heart smiled.

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I totally understand ... taught elementary school 35 years, and now I love to teach adults and maybe a few kids, on the side. I guess there's a teaching gene?

Thanks for your post,