Thursday, October 3, 2019

Blog Friends

If you haven't blogged, you might not get it. Some of my face-to-face friends don't get it. Many times, while engaged in a conversation, I'll respond with something I learned or heard about from one of my friends... a "blog friend". My face-to-face friends sometimes give me quizzical looks. As they are not bloggers, they don't realize that many of us "follow" other bloggers, and get to know them as true friends, through our online connections. We share our life events and they share their's and we know many facets of their lives. Just like happens with a face-to-face friend.

It's similar to other social media, but we began our connection as total strangers. While reading a friend's blog post, I might see a comment from another blogger, or I might see a link to another blog on a side bar of a blog friend's page. I find my self "hop-scotching" from blog post to blog post. When I stumble upon a blog that interests me, I'll follow the blog, and when time permits, return and read more posts. Readers have an option of commenting on blog posts, and the blogger can return comments. In this way, we sometimes get a small conversation going. When I follow a new blogger, that blogger may check out my blog, and begin to follow my posts. I have been blog friends with quite a few bloggers for nine years! Those friendships run deep!

On rare occasions my interactions have jumped off the Internet page. I shared letters and packages with a few bloggers. I've stopped in my travels to meet a few others. It is all very rewarding. 

Recently I knew my travels would take me near a very special blogger named Inger. She first blogged about the Tehachapi Railroad Loop in 2011. On our route from California to Florida last year, we drove right by the loop. I was beyond excited... and filled the Mister in on the loop, and he, having cut his eye teeth on the railroad, became enthused. This year, I (being in charge of the route we drive) planned for us to stop in Tehachapi on our first night of travel. I wanted him to see trains climbing the loop, and maybe see the front of the train cross over the back. I wanted to meet Inger!

I've always felt a kinship with Inger. She is Swedish. My mother was Swedish. Inger loves the open spaces where she lives, and finds beauty everywhere. I feel the same way. Inger loves dogs, and I do, too!

Everything worked out perfectly. We had a nice drive from our California house to a campground next to a glider airport in the delightful town of Tehachapi, CA. (I was hoping we’d see gliders, but it was too windy.)  After walking the dogs and setting up camp, we took off for the loop.  We were just in time to catch a train coming down the pass.  It was remarkable to see the train loop around the hillside, turn and enter a sloping decline to a tunnel that goes under the back of the train. This is a one-of-a-kind engineering marvel that was constructed in 1876, and that is still used today by an average of 40 trains each day.

This train is going uphill. The locomotives are almost dead center in the picture. They are moving to the right. You can see a change of color in the grass just above the engines. That is where the trains emerge, also moving to the right, having come through the tunnel that is not visible in the picture.
It was to watch.


Although I took a number of pictures and videos from the hillside, it's hard to truly see the ingenuity of the loop. This overhead shot looking up the canyon gives a better perspective. We were standing on the hillside on the upper right of this picture.

Courtesy of the Thayer School of Engineering
Here is a link to a youtube video of a long training going around the loop, if this sort of thing is exciting to you! It's OK to be excited! When we were at the loop a 10 year-old boy was jumping up and down and squealing in excitement! A fellow who has lived in Tehachapi all of his life brought a visitor up to see the loop and said he's come hundreds of times, and he always gets a kick out of seeing the trains!
 https://youtu.be/yZCYhP1D4O4

The next morning we went into the town to meet Inger for breakfast. Inger writes "Desert Canyon Living". It was so nice to spend some time visiting face to face. We plan to come back next year, and spend a few days to see Inger, meet her dogs, Faith and Samson, and see more of the things Inger has written about on her blog. Tehachapi is quite the place!

Dreaming, the Mister, Inger

4 comments:

  1. How fun to meet your blog friend in person. I often remark on things my blog friends say to friends who don't blog. I don't think they understand, like you said.

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    Replies
    1. It was fun to meet her. I've been lucky to meet a few others throughout the US.

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  2. Hi Cyndi - how wonderful ... so pleased you stopped off and were able to meet up with Inger. Dreaming - you are living your dream ... and helping Mister live his ... that loop is amazing and those photos you've given us are just great. Brilliant to see - thanks ... cheers Hilary

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    Replies
    1. You are welcome, and yes, I am very fortunate in all I've been able to do in the past years.

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