Over on his blog, Chris Adams has written a very thoughtful piece on eating the (model railway) elephant called “Too Much”. Like many of us – myself included – he hit the point where there was so much to do on his layout, it felt like too much. Click on his header image (below) to read more – including how he’s dealing with this challenge:
I’ve been there – mostly on previous layouts. My adventure with Port Rowan is, in large part, my way of coping with that feeling. I purposefully curbed my ambitions to design a layout that I felt would best fit the demands on my time and the reality of living at least an hour’s drive from almost all of my group of hobby friends – which means I’m doing most of the work, and the operating, by myself. (The exception being David Woodhead, who lives about six blocks from me. Even so, we’re both busy so we see each other less often than one would expect.)
Each time I start a new layout, I find it has less complexity. To provide but one example of this:
– Two layouts ago, my layout had 30 turnouts on it.
– My previous layout had about 15.
– This one – Port Rowan – has eight.
I sometimes joke that my next layout will have no turnouts at all, like the brilliant Eric Bronsky layout Noitcart Traction from the April, 1978 MR:
And sometimes, it’s not a joke…
I know Chris well enough to know that he’ll get beyond this feeling of “Too Much”. But I also know that when I feel like that, it helps to know that I’m not the only one. And while I’m too far away to offer help in person, I think he’s on the right track so he doesn’t need my help anyway. If you read his blog, you’ll understand what I mean.
I’m looking forward to more progress on The Valley Line – in due course.