At the bottom on the left is an alphabetical list of the pages in this web site, to help you navigate if you feel so inclined.
A guide to our family photo album covering 1994-2010, showing the principal themes, is here.
A year by year guide to our family time-line from 1994 through 2007 is here.
A photo journal beginning in 2008 is here.
The most recent pages of the album, copies of posts from my WordPress family blog, http://ianstock.wordpress.com/, are linked here:
Trains. Ian's grandfather, great grandfather and great-uncles worked for the Great Western Railway, or GWR, in England, and trains are in his blood. We fulfilled his childhood dream and took the train across the USA, from New York to California, in June of 1997. True, we had a lot of baggage as we were moving house, a total of 17 pieces on the trains, and true that we did not know exactly where we were going to live or even how we would live once we arrived in Santa Cruz, but what a trip. Look at that sunrise, looking back from the train on the third or fourth morning!
Somewhere around the Utah Nevada border, early in the morning. Ian secretly wants to buy a modest plot of land out there somewhere, where Nevada and Utah and Colorado and Arizona congregate, with water and hook-ups and a concrete slab big enough to park a trailer on, and spend the rest of his days listening for the freights and writing. Meanwhile, he works on!
"This land is your land, this land is my land . . . ." Woody Guthrie
On a Rocky Mountain prairie an hour or so west of Denver, we caught our own locomotive crossing a rural road. Here are more views of the Colorado mountains.
What someone who has never been to the American West cannot imagine, especially coming from one of the European or Asian countries where people are packed together like sardines in cans that won't open, is the vastness of the land, the sense of space almost everywhere. We've all heard of the great conurbations, and we love New York the same as anyone who's ever been there, but cities of her ilk remain the exception to the rule of inviting and enormous expanses of empty land. These two photographs, this is America. This is the land that immigrants across the generations, around the world, fell in love with.
Papa was fortunate enough to be able to participate in the annual Happy Valley School Rail Faire in May 2004. The large photo below shows the uninstallation of the model steam train track at the end of the Faire.
Then there was the famous popcorn man, busily working below, between grumps! He was asked to prepare popcorn for 200 children (a neighboring school was also invited) using the home popcorn maker in the photo, and it took several hours the night before as well as all morning at the Faire. Carl is the popcorn man, as Judy and papa offer encouragement! Carl and Judy can also be seen at this party.
The conductor of the Faire was none other than Mr. Mac, of Happy Valley School. Here he is, offering papa a little much appreciated encouragement. The love of trains faces great misunderstanding in this world, and we should all do our best to encourage it!
Listing of Pages in the Site
. . . with Alban