What did you want to do as a Kid?

trains

Did you have that ultimate dream job you wanted to do as a kid? I did, not that I ever pursued it.

For me I wanted to be a train driver, I can’t remember why I did, but I did.

trains

It is not that I am so old that I had a romantic notion of driving steam trains.

When I was growing up in the UK, the local train service, and yes we had a local train service, was a very boring electric train service. It wasn’t that, that inspired me to be a train driver.

I did get excited when we were stuck at the level crossing, providing we were at the front and I got the best view of the trains as they went passed.

Probably one of the influences on my early career choice was being bought up on the original Thomas the Tank Engine Books.  Yes Books. As a kid I had several of the Thomas the Tank Engine Books and was enthralled by them.

The first Thomas the Tank Engine TV show was produced in the UK in 1984 at Shepperton Studios in England.  Actually close to where I lived at that time, by some sort of coincidence. I had graduated University by the time Thomas had hit the magic box!

Model Trains

I am not quite sure when I had my first “TraTrainsin Set” but it was a wooden oval with a wooden engine and carriages.  

As I got older I had my first electric train set.  I think my grandparents got it for me for Christmas.  It was the little Red Engine , I still have it, it is in the middle of the picture.

Overtime the collection of trains and rolling stock grow.  My father traveled abroad and he bought home  trains that would work on my system.

You can see a US train on the left hand side of the picture.

Serious about Model Trains

When I got to my pre-teens and younger teen years I was really serious about my model trains.  I had a model railway all around my bedroom. It was sophisticated, multiple stations, different types of trains, steam, electric, diesel, British, American, European, a working mail train along with signals and a rail yard.

Most of the trains were manufactured by Triang which was taken over by Hornby which still exists as a manufacturer of model railways. They manufactured all types of model trains including Passenger Trains, wagons, coaches and buildings.

I spend many a day building and playing with this train world around my room.  The funnest thing is that the train was a complete circuit and so went right across the middle of my bedroom.  At this time I also would sleep walk and I always manage to bend down and walk under the railway in my sleep.

I hope you found this article interesting? Feel free to share my love of model trains as a kid on Facebook or your favorite social network by using the buttons below.

When I was Young

Yesterdays blog was how I ended up doing what I do today.  Starting from my first job in the defense industry. I wanted to continue my story by giving you a bit about what it was like when I was young.  This time I am going to talk a little bit about my early years including Elementary School

Where was I born?
Andy Lockhart

I was born in South London, England and spent most of my early years living west of England.

Where did I grow up?

I grow up in England in a small town called Egham, which is west of London, most famous for being close to the meadow where the Magna Carta was signed.  You can see from the picture of me that I was into fast cars at a young age.

What was it like?

Andy Lockhart

So what was it like growing up in suburban England? We lived on a housing estate built in the 1950’s where the Milkman still delivered the Milk.  We played in the street and walked the 5 miles to school.  This was in the sixties, perhaps still the age of innocents.  Definitely a time of fewer cars and hence playing in the street was relatively safe.

Even my mother allowed me to stir the gravy standing on my push along bus.  Suspect that it didn’t qualify for child endangerment in those days!

Our house was a three bedroom semi-detached house as they are called in the UK.  Duplex to you US folks. We still had fire places which burned coal and had coal delivered by the coal man!  We had a telephone, but it was on a party line.  Yes we had to share a phone line with another family.

What were my parents and Grandparents like?

What was it like growing up in the 60s? My mother stayed at home and looked after my sister and I and my father worked for Parks Davis developing drugs. Parke Davis became part of Warner Lambert.  He actually worked on the antibiotic found in Neosporin.  I guess that is the claim to fame.

Austin Cambridge

My parents grow up during the great depression and the second World War.  They experienced first hand what it was liked to be bombed. My paternal Grandfather served in the first world war in the cavalry riding camels in Egypt.

My fathers parents lived on the south coast of England. Only some 60- 80 miles away but at that time it was at least half a day’s drive.  We had an Austin Cambridge which we would all get into and head to Eastbourne, half a day later we would arrive.

My Grandfather was a bit of a comedian and apparently swapped my mothers iron tablets for M&Ms.  My mother hates swallowing tablets and so went through all the pain to swallow these tablets to find out they were just M&Ms.

Going to Eastbourne was great as a kid.  It was by the sea and we got to go down on the beach.  Eastbourne has a stoney beach and is cold.  So when I say beach don’t think of Hawaii!

We didn’t see so much of my maternal Grand Father.

What was School like?

Like SchoolSo what was school like?  Well the buildings date back to Victorian times. It had a pretty big playground but was located on a  busy road by 60s UK standards, although we did walk to school!

My memory of my school is very different from the Elementary school my kids went to, in Texas, except it is still Andy Lockharthas one class per grade.  The one teacher did all the subjects.

At that time we still got free milk at school.  11.00AM every day we got 1/3 pint of milk we had to drink, and every so often it was off! Ugh!

PE was either run around the school hall o play football (soccer) outside on the playground.  The girls at breaks would either be doing mass skipping ( a long rope with as many of them jumping it as possible) or hopscotch.

I found one of my class pictures from infant school (elementary).  This was taken in the school hall and I am even still connected on Facebook to a few of my old classmates.

You will see our one teacher.  This was the standard school picture in those days.  I am sure my mother has more of these.

So what are your memories of your early years?  Are you still in contact with your classmates from Elementary school?