I’m not sure if we live on the good side or the bad side of the tracks, but we can hear train whistles all day long. It hasn’t seemed to get old to the kids, even though they still like to ask “What’s that sound?” when the whistle blows. I think it inspired Caroline’s subconscious because for three weeks straight she played with nothing but trains.
When I was kid, my father used to tell us to lift our feet when we drove over train tracks. As a kid, I wasn’t sure exactly why, but I did it because my dad (and grandmother) worked for the railroad so I figured they had the inside scoop. Now that we are in an area that has rails everywhere, I have taken to joking around with the kids and telling them to lift their feet as we go over the tracks. They wanted to know why. A quick internet search told me it’s suppose to be good luck or you are suppose to make a wish, depending on what you prefer to believe. So my new found knowledge has lead me to wonder if I was lifting for luck, wishes or some other reason all those years. I haven’t had a chance to hear from my dad what his spin on this wacky tradition is so I am going with luck over wishes.
Why not pick wishes? Well, for one thing, I never had a pony. I am sure that if I was making wishes for lifting my feet over train tracks, one of those wishes would have been for a pony. And secondly, I don’t feel unlucky. I’ve never been one to have tremendous luck…no winning lottery ticket, no long lost relative leaving me millions. But I’ve also never broken any bones, been deathly sick or destitute. I feel lucky in life and love. Maybe I should start participating in the leg lifting again, you know, just to make sure I don’t lose my luck.
The kids and I were out doing errands last Monday when the flashing lights and the gates lowered to signal a train would be passing by. Caroline and Liam were silent at first, not sure why we were stopped. Then Captain Obvious (who’s true identity shall remain hidden) declared that a train was coming and cheers erupted. The cheers were short lived, as was the train. A small commuter train, Silver Bullet style, passed in a flash. I think they both were hoping for a slow moving freight train. No matter, they both are on the lookout—lifting feet, eyes peeled for flashing signals and closing gates. And gaining good along the way.