Do I regret the decisions from back then? No. In fact, my motivation toward model railroading went to another level. I'm no more a prisoner of what should be a layout, but freed by doing what I really wanted to do from the start: small time hometown railroading.
|Dominion Textile in Montmorency (credits Stéphane Mélançon, 2014)|
Reducing the scope of the project (less locales, but more prototypical ones) made it easier to smallow and I don't feel the pressure I had during the previous year.
So far, each effort paid off, be it a fascia, a bridge, a crossing, a benchwork... Every little project makes sense because it is a part of a coherent whole. A whole we want and which is a mirror of our motivation in this hobby.
Jérôme talked a lot about smaller trains but more involving industrial switching. The answer to that was Donohue and Cement St. Lawrence. Knowing him, I'm pretty sure he'll have a lot of fun switching those industries.
Personnaly, I wanted a more realistic approach where scenery was part of the story. Less industries and more open space gave me the opportunity to plan realistic uncrowded scenes. I like my area and I'm proud that some scenes already start to look like the REAL thing.
Louis-Marie isn't that much of an hardcore model railroader, but he likes trains and feel good by building things by is own. Give him a challenge and he will take it on the spot. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think his interest in the hobby took another shape recently and that's good news. We wouldn't be there without his great generosity.
Another one, in the shadow, is Stéphane Mélançon. He's a humble modeller from my area that also model, on a smaller scope Murray Bay Sub in Montmorency. Almost all his family worked at Dominion Textile plant including himself for a short while during the 80s and his uncle was an employee loading and unloading cars at Cement St. Lawrence. His help is invaluable because he provided us with first hand accounts of these industries, how they worked and with many great pictures. It may sound cheezy, but knowing someone doing the same thing as yourself is a big support to be better yourself and see if you're on the right track. He may think I helped him much more than he helped me, but I know he was the one that sparked everything. I wish him good luck with his project and I am pleased to see how his constant efforts to outdo himself bear fruits. His latest attemps at painting and weathering is Dominion Textile plant is a proof of that.
So, in retrospect, I consider we took the right decision. Everything is now clearer and we can understand how the project will develop in the future. Better, we DO NOT FEEL OVERWHELMED by the task as it was before.
Trevor Marshall calls it "achievable layout". I didn't grasp perfectly what he was saying a few months ago. He seemed lost in his own "perfect" little world... And now I understand it as I am myself immersed in my own "perfect" little world. Going small is far to be about compromise, but much more about wholeness. We aren't missing things but mastering them instead...