By B. Smith and C. E. Hunt
Looks like they finally have gotten one of the loads of rock unloaded.
Two loads of cement have been unloaded and are now empties.
Time to head out up Limpia Canyon to the interchange. If the new traffic is waiting on the interchange, the crew is looking forward to getting home on time. That’s been rare since the Limpia-Rescado Project began.
All right, finally out on the main and making good time. However, upon getting through the canyon and up to the interchange, the crew is not happy to see an empty interchange.
The crew gets its interchange positioned ready for the arrival of their interchange partner. It is obviously running late.
The crew waits. And waits. And waits.
Finally, Jed, the conductor, decides to walk up to the Taylor place. The interchange is in a remote area and the closest telephone is about a mile away at the headquarters of the Taylor Ranch. It is starting to get late, and Jed wants to know what to do, the crew’s hours are running short. They need to leave very soon to have any hope of getting back before they are out of hours.
Missy, Mac Taylor’s wife, lets Jed borrow the phone. What one must do working on a shortline!
After his initial call, the trainmaster calls Jed back and says stand pat. The interchange train will arrive very soon and the contractors on the reclamation project are howling for more cement. Jed knows this is probably BS but starts walking back to the train. By now, it is getting to be dusk.
Needless to say, the interchange did not arrive and the crew had too few hours to make it home. What a mess! Knowing the interchange would eventually arrive and they couldn’t legally make it back to Sanderson, the crew decided to hole up in the caboose. There were three bunks and Bill always kept a few cans of beans on board.
Fortunately, the beans weren’t needed, Missy drove out and offered them the chance to dine with the ranch crew. Hot damn!–brisket, beans and tortillas! Great chow. Stiff bunks awaited them, but they enjoyed dinner at least.
Missy gave the crew a ride back and they played a few hands of poker before hitting the hay (or bunk).