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Apologies for the absence of a picture or my usual ramblings yesterday but I was otherwise engaged and simply ran out of time! I’ve been pretty much desk-bound this week as the weather’s so bloody awful. We’ve had lots of torrential rain and gusty winds, so my exercise regime’s gone to pot too. Apart from my birthday it’s been a funny old week. Maybe it’s the ‘Covid blues’ but I’ve really struggled to build up much enthusiasm for anything over the past few days. Perhaps that’s due to the uncertainties and the feeling that life’s on hold at the moment as we all stare a new lockdown (in whatever form it takes) in the face. I’m trying to keep on top of work and be productive but there are occasions when my motivation needs jump-starting. If only hibernation was an option for us humans. Or perhaps I could take a leaf out of Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy’s Hotblack Desiato and spend a year dead for tax reasons…

Hopefully my mood and motivation will recover in the next few days when it finally stops bloody raining and I can escape these four walls!

To be fair, the pair of us did last night in order to spend some time with friends. Being law-abiding souls, the ‘6 from the 6’ as we call ourselves met up in a friends garden, where he’d been busy having an enclosure built that could protect us from the elements whilst allowing social distancing. It worked a treat although it was sorely tested by the awful weather. Even so, it was lovely to be able to spend a few hours together laughing and joking. Who knows when we’ll be able to do it again?

Ironically, as I’ve been typing this, I’ve just heard the news that West Yorkshire moves into Tier 3 from Midnight on Sunday, so that answers that question. Oh, deep, deep joy. It’s going to be a long winter…

Right, on that happy news it’s time for a picture of the day. Today’s choice is something different. Back in 2000-2001 I was travelling in India. Lynn and I had visited friends in Goa for Xmas and New Year, after which Lynn flew back to the UK and I stayed on to visit the Gujarat in Northen India to get travel pictures. I also hoped to find the last Indian steam locomotives operating on the national network. Broad Gauge steam had already disappeared, but there was a last outpost of metre gauge steam operating out of the evocatively named Wankaner Junction! I arrived there at the beginning of February 2000 but I was weeks late. The last locomotives has run at the end of January. However, Wankaner locomotive depot was still littered with engines. Their fires had been dropped and the place left deserted with the last locomotives and the remains of others that had been cannibalised over the years to keep them running. Here’s a picture I took inside the shed early on the morning of February 13th 2000.

YG Class 2-8-2’s No’s 3318 (left) 3437 & 3360 (nearest the camera) illuminated by the sunrise inside Wankaner Junction shed.

You can find more shots from the series, along with many other Indian rail pictures in this gallery. I was sad to have missed them but thankful that I’d seen Indian steam in action several years before in 1985-86 and 1991-92. What a different world it seems now!

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