Train Snowed In


snow traintrain2







Train Snowed In

What are you going to do? Your a railroad engineer, the operator of a great big old train? You just got your train stuck in this huge snow drift? That certainly presents a dilemma, to put it lightly. Wait until Spring? What are the options? I suppose the only thing you can do is walk into town and go into the local pub or saloon for help. Hey boys, “would you mind coming out and pushing my train out of the snowdrift?” I’ll buy drinks for everyone, If you can get my train out of that snow bank. It might be a good idea to bring some shovels along. This might require a little bit of snow shoveling

The saloon boys got out to the edge of town where they could see what that train looked like. No way will we ever get that train out of that snowdrift! Leave it until spring!  The situation got real negative in a hurry. The engineer could see a mutiny in the making, he had to sweeten the pot. Almost begging, he said, “give it one good day, I know you guys can do it.” Everybody is promised good hot meals and several rounds of drinks when it is over. They must have been a hungry bunch, as everyone was at that time. He put together a fairly large crew in short order, within a day they had the train dug out and set free, back on its way.  Most of the volunteers felt a little obligated to dig in and shovel out that train anyhow. It was bringing supplies to their little town out in Alberta, Canada.

My great-grandfather Ole Hoel Olson is the tall man standing by the other snow movers on top of the snowdrift. You can see he is much taller than the average man in the group. You might say he was a giant among men. A big old Norwegian Viking. He and his wife Johanna had three children Gideon, Andrew and Etta. Johanna died in Michigan before the family moved West. I have to think Ole Hoel was a quiet, very reserved man even as big as he was but when He walked into the woods with an ax, the trees probably wilted! His sons Gideon and Andrew were very quiet people, men of few words, they wouldn’t say poop if they had a mouthful. I have to think they took after their father. Neither one was tall but they wore size 14 shoes.

Andrew was my grandfather,  a no nonsense man, he would not tolerate disorder, things had to be organized. If he walked into his little workshop, after us kids had been in there and we heard him say, “everything is topsy-turvy in here.” We knew we were in trouble. To him, topsy-turvy was a very bad thing to create. He spoke more with his eyes  than with his words, we quickly understood him quite well. The volume level was never very loud either.


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