My son took these pictures on a slow, rainy train journey through the swamps and woods of the Blackstone Valley. They have lain here, in my files, waiting for a time to properly present them. A little processing to make them more painterly … and they are ready.




The tracks are old and narrow and the train, which runs once a week and goes from one yard to another, never exceeds five miles per hour.

33 thoughts on “TRAINS

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:18 am

      See? Now that’s what I told him and all he did was complain that it was raining. I thought the rain made the pictures even more interesting.


  1. draliman May 30, 2015 / 3:49 am

    I really like that effect you’re using to make things more “painterly” 🙂 The last photo in particular is amazing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:16 am

      It’s an “oil painting” effect. More like a textured paper effect, really. I use it often. It seems to be a part of Photoshop. I don’t know how I missed it for years. I did a bit of other diddling around, increasing saturation a bit (it was raining, so it was gray) and a bit more contrast. Otherwise, it was just the texture and a little bit of cropping. Not much. They were pretty good, right out of the camera.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Taswegian1957 May 30, 2015 / 5:33 am

    I was intrigued by the view from the cab in the first photo and popped back to look at the related posts about Owen’s trip on the railway. As a railfan myself I can say getting a chance to do something like that is really exciting.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:14 am

      He had hoped to get back to doing it again, but the guy he knew retired. I’m not even sure if they are running the train anymore. He may have gotten some of the last shots ever.


        • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:15 pm

          I used to hear the train whistle every evening, but I haven’t heard it at all this year. It may be that the trains are finally gone from one of the very first places they were ever used.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:14 am

      I love trains. It is — along with ships — the last romantic way to travel. I wish American trains were in better shape!


  3. Garry Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 7:08 am

    Just need to add Rod McKuen’s song about watching trains. Good stuff!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 8:00 am

      Owen’s pictures from last year. Never even processed most of them and I certainly didn’t do them justice, so I gave them a bit more oomph this time 🙂


  4. Rick May 30, 2015 / 9:25 am

    You are right. They are ready.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 6:12 pm

      Thank you!! I wonder if those trains are running any more. I haven’t even heard the whistle in months. The tracks were in bad shape … I’ll have to ask around.


  5. reocochran May 30, 2015 / 12:49 pm

    There is something about trains that attracts my eyes. I have always thought if I had a chance to go to Europe (I have only been to Spain and Portugal) I would get a Europass and see everywhere! Smiles, Robin

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn Armstrong May 30, 2015 / 6:10 pm

      They closed the train station in town, and just once a week, a train blows through — the old Worcester-Providence line. Just freight. No passengers. The whole train system is in shambles, I’m afraid. Sad. I still love the sound of the whistle!!


  6. evilsquirrel13 May 31, 2015 / 9:49 am

    I have mentioned before about how my city is surrounded by train tracks and dealing with crossings is a way of life here. That description of the train… never goes over 5 mph and just goes from yard to yard… sounds so much like the trains that run back and forth among the yards at the local steel mill, and constantly impede traffic on the busy highway that happens to run across their precious tracks. It’s not uncommon for them to block the highway for half an hour or more with the slag train just sitting there in the middle of the road, or slowly inching back and forth, back and forth, back and forth……..


    • Marilyn Armstrong May 31, 2015 / 5:33 pm

      You got it. These trains run between the old mills, many of which cannot be reached by roads. This is the “Upton-Grafton” line. About 20 miles between two towns in the valley. Not attached to any of the more major lines. Even 100 years ago, everyone had his own agenda.


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