Denny Anspach <danspach@...>
There was so much to like, and even more to savour from this year's Meet, that I am unable to truly line up specific favorites. However, the overall best feature of this gathering of prototype railroad modelers is the relaxed intensely sociable good natured and relaxed culture promoted by Mike Brock et al, i.e. - "Leave your ego at the door!". Cameraderie trumped all else, and cameraderie with some of the very finest railroad modelers in the country to boot.
The pleasant hours spent just sitting around talking with friends, old and new, are my best memories. That Mike makes the big display/ ballroom available for such socializing during the entire meet actively promotes these activities. So much of whatever success that I have currently in Prototype Modeling can be traced right back to such personal networking.
My second best memories were the fine meals a shifting group of disreputable usual-suspect Steam Era Freight Car listers shared at Florida Seafoods most evenings. On good authority, I have been informed that this good (that is- GREAT) food institution was planning to ration the amount of shrimp being served, should this raffish mob had actually shown up one more night.
Three of the more unsung heroes of this fine meeting are Jeff Aley, Marty Megregian and Armand Premo.
Jeff managed the Clinics with quick and silent efficiency. He works throughout the year to both recruit Clinicians and then manage the schedule, and finally installs/operates/fixes the audiovisual equipment. "The trains departed and arrived on time".
Marty handled the displays and the vendors with immense good humor and enthusiasm (Marty has a busy dental office with an operating O scale railroad, and two Indian motorcycles on display- a person with obviously well grounded Reality Testing).
Armand, a seriously-displaced northern Vermonter, handled the registration- an oft thankless, but absolutely essential task.
Mike Brock? Well........., ah-h-h, h-mm <foolish grin>.
If I am correct, Prototype Rails 2010 will be this fine meet's tenth anniversary. I have attended them all, and I already look forward to greeting once again so many old friends, and countless new friends this next January.
Denny S. Anspach MD