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New Year's Resolutions: How'd I do and What's New for 2003?

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  • Jeffrey MacHan
    Hi Gang, This is my third yearly public humiliation regarding my New Year s Resolutions. My original goal in actually making resolutions and posting them to
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 2, 2003
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      Hi Gang,

      This is my third yearly public humiliation regarding
      my New Year's Resolutions. My original goal in
      actually making resolutions and posting them to the
      lists is, and I quote, "I thought that by making a
      public spectacle of myself there would be greater
      incentive for me to actually DO something to achieve
      these goals.", unquote.

      *********

      So how did I do for starters? Let's see...

      2002 Resolution #1: set a budget for "Z" purchases of
      $999 USD.

      Result: I actually passed this one and I can hardly
      believe it! My gross spending on Z this year was
      around $250. Let me see...I bought a 4 pack of the
      new Pennzee Pacific Fruit Express reefers on eBay
      ($70), a Railway Express Miniatures crane at NTS2002
      ($10), a souvenir pair of Schenker OSS freight cars in
      Goeppingen ($28). In Sinsheim, I picked up the
      Faszination Modellbau commemorative car ($25), a pair
      of Z bicycles ($10)and a set of test rollers ($60).

      I don't think that I can pull this feat off two years
      in a row!

      2002 Resolution #2: finish the Civil Engineering AP
      certificate.

      Result: This one is still on the "way overdue past
      business" file. I made a big effort to lay the last
      sleepers but then we moved this summer and I only
      brought it out again in early November.

      Honestly, I thought about finishing it but I got
      sidetracked with a new AP project, the Dispatcher
      certificate. I'm now happily working with
      spreadsheets and drawing programs to complete the
      timetable and schematic track plan. At least the
      Dispatcher certificate will be finished by the end of
      February. I have a knack for finding substitute
      projects that somehow bump the ones I thought were
      priorities. I absolutley have to finish the track
      laying by the Toronto National Convention in July!

      2002 Resolution #3: have the scratch-built UP RDC3
      diesel ready for a first attempt for a merit award at
      the NFR Spring meet in Kitchener, Ontario next May.

      Result: This didn't happen...didn't go to the meet in
      Kitchener either. In fact, I have decided to mothball
      the scratch loco projects until some far future date.
      It is more likely that I will find the time to
      complete the Master Builder - Cars certificate during
      the year.


      2002 Resolution #4: try to arrange for 1 BIG trip with
      the VECRR in 2003. My partner in crime, Terry Sutfin,
      is ready to go and the custom shipping crate is
      perfect for world-wide adventures. How about G�ppingen
      in May 2003?

      Result: Well Goeppingen is out but Utrecht, NL is IN!
      Terry and I are scheduled to run the VECRR at
      Eurospoor next October. The timing is much better for
      both of us and for our wives who have made it clear
      that any trip to the Netherlands must include them.
      Fine by us!

      ********

      So much for the 2002 resolutions. I guess that I'm 2
      for 4 on them. What about 2003 resolutions$

      2002 was a wonderful year for me and the VECRR with 10
      shows, a trip to Europe with my best friend, articles
      in Ztrack, the Bulletin and lots of fun with Z_Scale.

      I've GOT 2 SLOW SOWN so 2003 resolution #1 is to
      participate in no more than 5 train shows including 1
      in Qu�bec and 1 overseas. The schedule is as follows:

      1- Feb 1-2, 2003, West Springfield, MA, Amherst BIG
      Train Show (Definite unless weather conditions prevent
      making the trip)
      2- April 21, 2003, Sanford, ME, Lion's Club annual
      train show (Confirmed but subject to cancellation due
      to unforseen events)
      3- July 18-20, 2003, Toronto, ON, National Train Show
      (Definite barring illness or injury)
      4- October 17-19, 2003, Uetrecht, NL, Eurospoor
      (Definite but still 9 months away. Anything can
      happen in the meantime)
      5- November 23-24, 2003, Hartford, CT, Great American
      Train Show (Confirmed but also subject to weather
      conditions)

      2003 resolution #2 is to complete the NMRA Master
      Model Railroader requirements before the end of 2003.

      Yeah, I know that this is a major challenge but I have
      my reasons for wanting to complete the MRR this year
      so I am motivated.

      I need AP certificates 5, 6 and 7 to reach this goal.
      Numbers 5 & 6 should be done before the Toronto
      National Convention. I have registered for the
      convention this year so that I can present rolling
      stock for merit judging. If I don't get sidetracked I
      hope to do a 4-car MOW train and a Union Pacific
      business car. I have already completed 3 of the 8
      cars needed for the Car certificate. I don't expect
      to qualify with all the cars so I'll be able to
      improve where needed for judging later in the year.


      I think that 2 resolutions are more than enough for
      2003. We'll see how I manage about this time next
      year ;-)

      *******

      Thanks for putting up with my musings and have a
      healthy and prosperous 2003.

      Jeffrey R. MacHan
      Chief Imagineer - Val Ease Central RR
      http://www.Val-Ease-Central.com



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    • jmac_han
      Hi Gang, Way back in January 2003, I made 2 new year s resolutions. Let s see how I did and what I have in mind for this year... ... Weather conditions and
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 3, 2004
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        Hi Gang,

        Way back in January 2003, I made 2 new year's resolutions.
        Let's see how I did and what I have in mind for this year...


        > 2003 resolution #1 is to
        > participate in no more than 5 train shows including 1
        > in Québec and 1 overseas. The schedule WAS as follows:
        >
        > 1- Feb 1-2, 2003, West Springfield, MA, Amherst BIG
        > Train Show (Definite unless weather conditions prevent
        > making the trip)

        Weather conditions and health issues DID prevent me from
        making the trip. The good news for 2004 is that we're booked for
        W. Springfield next February 7-8. This is a great show and
        should be on everyone's schedule to attend. Don't make the
        mistake of trying to take it all in in less than two days. Three
        buildings of vendors, layouts and manufacturers booths.


        > 2- April 21, 2003, Sanford, ME, Lion's Club annual
        > train show

        Didn't make this one either! Actually, 2003 got off to a really slow
        start. I didn't get the VEC out of the house until May when I
        hosted a mini-meet at the St-Bruno Station, a Québec Historic
        Building just down the street from my house.

        > 3- July 18-20, 2003, Toronto, ON, National Train Show

        This show was cancelled by the NMRA for health reasons
        (SARS). In record time, the Toronto organizing committee put on
        a great but much smaller show. The NMRA disappointed many
        due to their withdrawal of support.

        Mid-August my wife and I spent a wonderful weekend showing
        the VEC at the Canadian Railroad Museum during their model
        train exhibition. This show took place in the new 'Exporail'
        building and led eventually to something very exciting.

        > 4- October 17-19, 2003, Utrecht, NL, Eurospoor

        This was the second VEC European Adventure. The weather all
        week was sunny and pleasant. Not only did Terry and Helen
        Sutfin take part as crewmembers, we had a wonderful time as
        tourists in the Netherlands. Met a whole bunch of great
        Z-scalers and made plans to return to Europe in 2004.


        > 5- November 23-24, 2003, Hartford, CT, Great American
        > Train Show.

        GATS decided to remove this show from their schedule. Too
        bad. Doesn't look like I'll be back to GATS since they don't have
        anything even remotely close by planned for 2004.


        > 2003 resolution #2 is to complete the NMRA Master
        > Model Railroader requirements before the end of 2003.


        Boy, was I overly optimistic about this resolution. I did make
        some spurts of progress on the Civil and Dispatcher certificates
        but I don't know when I'll be able to get back to them in the short
        term. I'll be more than happy to finish one certificate in 2004.

        *******

        So what about resolutions for 2004? Actually, I have come to
        realize that, in the last three years, I have maintained a 50%
        completion rate, which isn't all that bad, I guess. Today, there is
        so much going on that I have come to accept that certain projects
        will be completed in their own sweet time, if ever. I'm now simply
        resolved to enjoy the trip. ;-)

        Speaking of trips, here's hoping to see you all in Paris, France
        next April 10-18 for the World Miniature and Scale Model
        Exhibition for the continuing European AdventureZ of the Val
        Ease Central RR.

        After that.....

        Here's wishing you a healthy and prosperous 2004.

        Jeffrey R. MacHan
        Chief Imagineer - Val Ease Central RR
        http://www.Val-Ease-Central.com
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