Sunshine Project – Day 86, Railroad Crossing, Huntingdon Valley, PA

There is less than a week left in the Sunshine Project, and so that means there is less than a week of winter remaining. The weather has taken a turn towards spring, that’s easy to see. The snow has melted and temperatures are up. I decided that today would be a great day for the inaugural run for this season, and I thought I’d take along the sunshine and find a spot.

I went to Lorimer Park, to the Pennypack Trail. I knew it would be in good shape for running – it drains well and gets a lot of sun, so the melting snow and the rain we had a couple of days ago should not have left it impassable. I wanted to do the whole 5.5 mile loop, though I knew I’d need to be walking some of it, so early in the season and just starting to run again.

So, off I went. Right away I saw two signs of spring: the park hours are extended and the parking lot has cars in it again.

I set off down the trail. Not too much later, I saw a man who is one of my “trail friends”. I walked a couple of minutes and we talked about how great it was to be back outside again. I went on, ran to the end, turned around, and came back to the rail crossing. This is where I had decided to set the sunshine.

I put it on the train control box handle. It seemed fitting – this box is new and is in service. Along the rail trail, the control boxes have endured 30 years out in the weather after the rail line was closed. But they are all did the same job, didn’t they?

The sunshine is set on the lowest extension on the left hand side.

The sunshine is set on the lowest extension on the left hand side.

I crossed over the tracks and noticed a train was coming down the line from the Bethayres station, going toward the city. It’s likely this train started in New Jersey – the line begins in the Trenton area. Long trip. Anyway, I waited to watch the train go by and to wave at the engineer.

I started on my way again but stopped to view the “art gallery”, as I think of it, underneath the overpass of Huntingdon Pike. I wondered if any new additions had been made over the winter. Remember, the rail line was abandoned for a long time and this was an isolated spot before the trail came in – perfect for graffiti – and this graffiti, some of it, looks quite old and weathered. I enjoy seeing it and I’m glad it hasn’t been painted over.

I ran a little way further and then stopped to do another errand. I put these stick ladies into one of the abandoned control boxes – I’ve left many figurines here over the last year, and I wanted to say, “I’m back!”. I’ll be interested to see how long these ladies stay around – usually they are gone within days, as is the idea.

The trail is muddy instead of icy. That’s great. The woods show no signs yet of any green or any leaves, but I don’t think it will be long.

This item lying on the ground caught my eye. Was it a stick or a bone? I have seen leg bones on the trail before – but this one was a stick.

Stick or Bone 3-16-15 small

I saw some interesting patterns on the surfaces of one of the control boxes and I had to stop and examine them further.

I was so happy to be back outside again.

Happy sunshine.

Sunshine, March 16, 2015.

Sunshine, March 16, 2015.

More about the Sunshine Project here, or search under the category “Sunshine Project”.

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About Claudia McGill

A person who does art and writes poetry. That's me!

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