I have been scanning my old color slides to digitize them for storage on my computer. I found a good image of a North American Aviation built ‘Hound Dog’ missile. The missile used an Inertial Measuring Unit (IMU) developed and produced by NAA in Downey, California and I wanted to share the image with my  friends. Two of these missiles were carried under the wings of the B-52 bomber as part of its armaments.


My wife’s paternal grandparents lived in Illinois their entire lives and they seemed content. Their roots were deep in our country – pre-revolutionary Virginia and you can’t get much deeper than that. We visited them at their home in Ridgefarm in 1965. We were a group of young California relatives coming to visit and we were very uncertain of what we were in for. We were immediately ‘at home’  when we said hello. It must have been an experience for Patty’s grandparents when four adults and five young children arrived at their doorstep as their guests for the next several days. We literally camped out at their home in Ridgefarm. It was an amazing experience for us. Patty’s grandmother did all the cooking on her woodstove. She was a remarkable woman and FINE cook.

Donna, Patty’s grandmother, was up early to get the stove ready for the nonstop cooking of the meals. She started the coal  fire in the stove using kerosene soaked corncobs. She really knew how to get the most out of her stove. The food we ate came out of their garden and that was an experience for our children. Our children even used the ‘three holer’ out back even though modern plumbing was at hand.

We remembered our visit with great fondness as the years passed and counted ourselves as being very fortunate to have experienced a little of the way it was before we went “modern”. By the way, have you ever eaten a REAL tomato? I have.



This is what happens when I can’t sleep. How am I doing as a photo editor?



Hank and I did some thing which, for us, was completely foreign to our lower middle-class lifestyle. We had been friends for a while as we had shared many experiences in mountain climbing, teaching mountaineering to beginners, and generally enjoying life in the High Sierra backcountry. One day, Hank asked me if I would join him on a kayak trip to explore Glacier Bay. After I got over my surprise at the request and after his explaining that the Glacier Bay that he was referring to was in Alaska and the the fact that I had never been in a kayak was no reason to say no and that we had survived mountaineering school on Mount Rainier without mishap, I said yes. But, I first had to ask my wife Patty if she was OK with the idea. She finally gave me her blessing after I assured her I would learn how to paddle a kayak before I went. She seemed to think this was important. Well, to make a long story short, Hank and I went to Alaska and spent almost two weeks exploring Glacier Bay. I intend to relate that experience but not in this Posting. Later, I will, after I find the photographs and negatives. I took several hundred color photographs, had the film developed and printed, showed them to a few persons, and then put them away in the garage. Other than telling a few stories to Patty, I have never told anyone of our Glacier Bay adventures. We should be dead, but, we survived in spite of our nautical naivete. I normally used slide film and and had slides to show as I related my stories. For reasons long lost to my memory, I used color film on the Glacier Bay trip. It is simple, no slides, no stories! I ran across the storage box with the photographs during rare garage cleaning episodes so I know they are in the garage. I have been thinking of scanning the negatives and writing about our trip and showing my scanned images. I believe it would make an interesting story, but we (David and I) have not been able to find the negatives or the prints. He, David, is looking in every box and this takes time as I have much “stuff” stored in the garage.

I think I need to explain to the less old of my readers that these events took place long before computers and scanners were commonplace and I had no choice but to wait these many years.

In the interest of transparency for my true reason for my writing this Posting, I must tell you I could not sleep tonight and I got out of bed to write something and this is the best that I could come up with. But, I am still not sleepy! I think I will stop writing and go turn on the TV and catch up on the late news. That should do the trick!


This is why I spent a few Sunday afternoons at Redondo Junction near downtown Los Angeles. The year was 1968. It has changed a little, but its still there – sorta.


I present this image as a test of your modeling sensibilities. I assert that you lack the ‘right stuff’ to become a true modeler of railroad rolling stock if you heart does not  skip a beat when you see this image. It has it all! The flatcars can be easily modelled from readily available cars and the ‘big watchmacallit’ on the cars is simple to model. Have fun! 



I believe this photograph was made when my mother was three years old. I further believe  it was taken on the occasion of her adoption by the Powell family. Her mother had died and her father could not care for her. I do not believe she ever saw him again. He died the year I was born, in 1932. My mother was born in the town of Olds. This town is located in Alberta Province, Canada. I consider myself as half Canadian and half US citizen. I think I can see something of my brother Don in my grandfather’s visage. I can see my sisters in mom’s face. We have a large number of cousins we have never met who live in British Columbia, Canada.

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