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Subject: Heatwave in the City Chapter 3 This is a work of fiction. Everybody in it is entirely my own creation. Don’t even think of suing me for putting you in a story, because I haven’t. If you happen to be resident in one of the places mentioned, or to belong to any of the institutions mentioned, don’t even think about telling me I haven’t portrayed them accurately. Work of fiction. The name of the institution only occurs because it is common knowledge so I couldn’t get away with pretending it was otherwise. If I’ve borrowed your Church, school, police station, laundrette – I haven’t. I’ve merely used the name on the building because people walk past and see it every day. Work of fiction. None of the people in the story exist, so none of the things that happen in the story can have happened to them. The world, however, is the one exception to this – the world which has in it so many wonderful people that writing fiction of this sort becomes an obligation – for me; not for everybody. You’ll have found your own place in the scheme of things, and can be wonderful in your own way. This is a story of love. It isn’t a story of sex, though that might get mentioned. There is no pornography here. Some of it is cross-generational, but it isn’t about perverted love either. Some is what nowadays is termed “gay”, but the same applies. If you think you might be offended by that, the time to go and read something else is now. Still reading? Then enjoy, and remember, you don’t pay to read these stories, but it does cost Nifty money to bring them to you. Please consider donating to Nifty at fty/donate.html Heatwave in the City by Jonah Chapter 3 The driver had selected first gear on the right hand handle on his desk and pushed the brake handle to ‘release’. He placed his left hand on the throttle and depressed it, then, still holding it down, he pulled it open. The engine roared and we moved slowly forward. “I have to keep my hand on that,” he told Simon (again – my translation). “If I let it come back up again we’d stop. That’s to make sure you’d be OK if anything happened to me.” He closed the throttle and selected second gear, then let the engine revs die down before reopening the throttle for a second or two. “Can you open that window for me?” he said. Simon reached up and pulled down the window on the right hand side of the cab. The driver had shut off and was gently applying the brake. “If you reach down the signalman want to give you the token”, the driver told Simon. ” That’s got a big hoop on it. Just stick your hand through the hoop.” Simon reached out of the window as the driver brought the train to a stand. He opened up again as Simon pulled the big token pouch inside. We saw the signalman walk back to his signalbox. “Now you need to check what it say on it”, the driver said. “If it say Shurrngham to Weybourne, we’re OK. That’s very important that is.” Simon examined the small, brass token where it showed through a hole in the pouch. “Sheringham to Weybourne,” he reported. “Well thank ‘eavens for that.” remarkedthedriver. “That mean we’ve got permission to be on this bit o’ line, and no other train has got it.” “Are there any other trains?” asked Simon, who had installed himself on the secondman’s side of the cab. “There’s two in light steam at Weybourne,but they won’t be out today,” replied the driver. “They’re warming ’em up slowly for tomorrow. If you come to Holt with us, you want to get off at Weybourne on the way back. You can go an’ have a look at ’em then” Simon turned to look at me through the glass. I nodded. From the corner of my eye I saw Peter punch the air. Neither of these boys miss much. We had slowed for a level crossing and the trabzon escort two tone horns could be heard blaring. The driver sounded our horn as we crossed the road, then he opened up and we began to accelerate. Some traffic had stopped on the adjacent road to wave to us as we passed. On our other side was a golf course, and beyond that, the sea. We accelerated up to 25 mile per hour, which, the driver said, was the speed for the line, and he shut off near an overbridge. We coasted for a hundred yards or so before he opened up again. On a high girder bridge we passed over the coast road, which had been on our left until that point. Before long the chimneys of Weybourne station came into view. We pulled gently into the platform with the cab next to the signalbox.The signalman walked across with a token, which the driver swapped for the one Simon had been holding. Buzz buzz! We were away again under the road bridge and over another bridge and climbing in picturesque woodland. Once out of the woods the view to our right opened up. Across the cornfield was the lovely village of Weybourne, with it’s stone Church and its windmill, beautifully set off against a sparkling sea. Soon a small platform appeared on our left, but the driver said we only stopped there on the way back – if needed. Then it was into a high sided cutting, the sides of it thick with golden gorse. The diesel engine could be heard echoing back at us from the cutting sides. I could imagine what it would be like climbing up here with a steam train. I made a mental note that I must do that sometime. At the top of the climb was a cottage with a solitary wind pump. Moorland heather and gorse seemed to stretch out for ever. It wasn’t to be forever however. More woodland sprang upon either side of us and then we dived under another overbridge. The driver had shut off for our final stop at Holt. We slid into an incredibly long platorm after Simon passed the token to the signalman. As soon as we were stationary, the driver removed his reverser key and brake handle and said, “Right! Now we need to be up the other end.” From the other cab we could see the station buildings on the other platform, and the signalbox, and the large shed, which the driver said was for carriages. The signal cleared for us and as soon as the guard sent his “Buzz buzz” we were off again. The scenery was no less stunning on the way back. The guard came up to the cab and said to the driver, “No-one for the halt.” “Right ho bor,” replied the driver. There was,however, a solitary passenger on the platform at Kelling Park Halt, so we stopped there anyway. The view from there, out over Weybourne village to the sea, was astounding. After another double-buzz from the guard we coasted down into Weybourne Station where we alighted. “See you in about an hour,” said the driver. We could see the red brick engine shed behind the platform and there was a bit of smoke drifting at the other end. We wandered into the booking office and asked if we were allowed to have a look at the engines on shed. The booking clerk looked across to an overalled man who was just passing through the booking hall. “What do you think Jim?” he said. “Can these folks have a look round the shed” “They can if I go with them,” replied the other. “I was just going to get a cup of tea, but it can wait.” “Oh it needn’t wait,” I replied.”I could do with a cuppa myself, and I’m sure the boys are ready for something.” I knew my boys. Seconds earlier they were straining at the leash to get to the shed, but politeness trumps everything. They would sooner die than let this man know that they weren’t gasping for a drink. Well we obtained tea for two, biscuits tunalı escort and three cold drinks for the boys and then sat on a bench on the platform to consume them.I had insisted on buying our host a cup of tea,and the boys were full of questions for him. Fully sated we followed Jim to the station forecourt and then to the shed entrance. In the shed there were engines in pieces, there were machine tools, there were gaping pits. It was easy to see why they daren’t let folks wander in there on their own. We found quite a few old main line diesels and diesel shunters, and some industrial saddle tank steam locos.We also found a huge WD Austerity 2-8-0. Outside was a J15, quite cold, but on the next road was a live 2-10-0 class 9F. This was massive by British standards and the boys were impressed. The high running plate on the 9F meant that there was good access to everything underneath. Simon could see everything underneath,what’s more. More questions, which Jim took great delight in answering. The loco in front of the 9F was also in steam. It was a Great Eastern Railway B12 -a huge 4-6-0. “We’re bringing her round at the moment,” said Jim. “She’s been in light steam all day, but she’s had some remetalling done on one of her bearings and we need to take her out to make sure it isn’t going to run hot. We’ll take her up to Sheringham light engine after the next passenger gets clear.” It was great to see this locomotive breathing steam.It looked splendid in its apple-green livery with her number in gold on her scarlet buffer beam. We turned our attention to a standard class 4 that stood dead on the shed. “Up you go,” said Jim so we all climbed to the cab. Jim explained what everything did, and guess who asked lots of questions. “You want to be volunteering for cleaning,” said Jim. “We can always do with keen volunteers.” I explained that we lived in London. “We get a lot of volunteers from London,” he told me. “They sometimes come up for weekends. He’s a bit young for that, but when he’s a bit older. Some of them book into B&Bs and some use our sleeping car.” That was bad news. There would be no living with Simon now. We heard the DMU departing for Holt. I suggested that we’d better get back to the platform ready for when it came back. We did that and then crossed the footbridge to go and look at the signalbox. Naturally, the signalman was as friendly as all the other people we had met so we all ended up in the signal box. The signalman showed us his brightly painted levers with their gleaming tops. He also showed us the two green and red tablet machines that dispensed the tokens to give to the driver – explaining how a machine was electrically interlocked with the machine in the next box so that only one token at a time could ever be out. That meant that only one train at a time could be on a stretch of single line. He showed us how he released the machine at Holt so that the signalman there would be able to send our DMU back. After that he showed us how he persuaded the signalman at Sheringham to release his own instrument so that Luke could obtain a token to give to the driver when he got here. Then he pulled the levers to clear the signals for it. “There you are,” he said.” We’re all ready for it, but if you’re going to catch it you’d better be on the other platform.” We thanked him and said our farewells. Jim was waiting for us on the other platform. “It’s confirmed,” he told us. “I’m taking the B12 up to Sheringham light engine when your train is clear. If that young man want to ride up with us in the cab……….” Did I ever tell you that Simon has big brown eyes, like a puppy dog? Well he has, or at least, he had tunceli escort at that moment. I should have been strong, but I hadn’t the heart. I simply grinned quickly and Simon departed with Jim before I could change my mind. Our DMU was with us in another ten minutes and Peter, Luke and I headed for the seat behind the driver. The driver slid the door open when he saw us and Luke promptly settled himself in the secondman’s seat. The driver turned and grinned. Two buzzes and we were off to Sheringham. It was ten to two when we arrived back in Sheringham, platform 2. Our driver said we would meet the steam engine on platform 1. We walked round the end of the platform and along the other platform. By the time we got there there were signs of steam beyond the golf links level crossing. The B12, running tender first,appeared and slowly crept up to the coaches in the platform. There was a lot of discussion up on the footplate, which was high above platform level. With a final farewell to Jim and his fireman, Simon stepped off of the footplate and floated down to the platform. Actually he didn’t – he descended the steps in the normal way – but the expression on his face suggested that he could have done. The locomotive had to wait in Sheringham until the DMU got back to Weybourne so its driver headed for the buffet, leaving the fireman to look after the engine. The boys and I left the station and headed across the road to Waterbank Road and joined the High Street at the other end of it. Sheringam is a picturesque town with most of its buildings faced with either grey shingle, or even greyer flint. Bright Norfolk pantiles topped off most of them. The High Street was wall-to-wall people.It would have been impossible to drive a car down there. We let ourselves be carried by the crowd to the sea front. We found ourselves on a concrete bridge over a slipway. Lots of small fishing craft had been pulled up on the slip way. Below the slipway the beach was beautiful smooth shingle for twenty yards or so, below which was sand. On this lovely Saturday people were playing on the beach and we walked along the promenade till we saw the lifeboat house,with its wooden slipway, ahead of us. We had not come equipped to swim, but it was perfectly acceptable to take off our shoes and socks and paddle. The foreshore was punctuated by wooden groynes reaching out into the sea. Most of them had wooden poles and triangles on the end, to warn the fishing boats of their position at high tide. Behind the lifeboat house and the line of beach huts was a line of highish cliffs. we already knew that the golf course was on top of those. By half past three we had paddled and walked to our heart’s content and headed back to the High Street to patronise one of the many eating places. We found our way into the Sheringham Trawler for traditional fish and chips, which turned out to be an exceptional, and substantial meal. Fully replenished it was time to make our way to the railway station for the train to Norwich. The journey home was just as exciting as the outward journey, but none of the boys saw much of the London suburbs. At Liverpool Street I guided three almost sleeping boys to the Metropolian Line platfroms. Nobody was going to have difficulty sleeping. TO BE CONTINUED If you’ve enjoyed this story, you’ll probably enjoy other stories in this series by the same author. This is the latest in a series that includes “A letter from America”, “Stranger on a train,” “Marooned”, “the Boston Tea Party”, “Immigrant,” and “A Cantabrian Operetta”, all the foregoing are on Nifty’s Adult/Youth site. The Pen Pals” is on Young Friends. You might also like “A Neglected Boy”, by Jacob Lion, also on Adult/Youth. You can find links to all these stories, as well as some illustrations on Jacob Lion’s website bly/jonah-stories.html My thanks go to Jacob for providing this facility as well as for his kind and generous support without which I would never have written any of them.

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