Somewhat late entering this challenge but it gives me an excuse to use some of the images I took whilst on Holiday in the summer. In the UK we have lots of Preserved Railways and these are popular tourist attractions. On a very grey day we made our way from Auchterarder over to Bo’ness on the River Forth for a visit to the Bo’ness and Kinniel Railway. This is also the home of the Scottish Railway Preservation Society’s museum, so it’s well worth a visit 🙂 I had great fun demonstrating to a young lady how to pull a signal lever – Epi watched on with a sympathetic smile 😉 The star of the show on the day was Hunslet designed 0-6-0 saddle tank 68007. She’s wearing a false identity because although she is the same as a number of similar locomotives bought by the LNER that subsequently saw service with British Railways, she was bought by the War department and after the war went to work in the Ayrshire collieries of the National Coal Board as number 7. Bo’ness was the terminus of the Slamannan and Borrowstounness Railway which was absorbed into the North British Railway and subsequently the LNER. The line retains much of the unique character of the period of its construction and operation. The other end of the preserved line is Manuel Junction at which there was an accident in 1874 when a freight train was allowed to shunt across the path of an express bound for Perth – 16 people were killed – it was a typical railway accident of the period and ironically would not have happened if block signalling equipment being installed at the time had been in service. Finally, our train crew for the day deserves a second glance – in war torn Britain some Women drove trains but I’m not sure that hair would have been accepted back then 😉 Here’s the photos 🙂

Catch up with Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge Here.

I don’t think the digital ink was dry on my last digest when we had yet another SCS Software surprise.  Friday morning and I was planning to have a drive in Oregon.  I was just checking on Twitter for anything regards Saturday’s football match (home to Leatherhead) when in popped a tweet from SCS – All drivers complete your World of Trucks jobs because the servers will be taken down for maintenance in, I think, 30 minutes.  Oh! well – perhaps I’ll have a run out in Oregon this afternoon 😦   I went and played with some household chores for a while 😉

Before that announcement I had been out and about mainly in American Truck Sim quite a bit.   I had been driving the Dawg for, I realised, over a month – that’s a long time in one truck!  I like to have a bit of variety and as I reported at the end of the last Digest I had finally bought a different truck – the Freightliner FLB.  This, like the Dawg, is another workshop mod from Harven and a really fun truck to drive.  After driving that Mack for so long I was amazed at how wibbly-wobbly the cab is on the FLB.  It is something that a couple of fellow drivers have commented on but I hadn’t really noticed it so much before.   Apparently it’s actually quite realistic and I have heard a tale from a trucker on YouTube about the need to strap yourself into the bunk of an FLB when running a crew operation because otherwise you end up on the floor, wedged behind the drivers seat!   I’ve equipped her with a 500HP Detroit Diesel 60 Series engine and a 13 speed Eaton-Fuller gearbox (with a retarder).  This should give enough power for those heavier jobs in Oregon that I was talking about last time.   She’s also painted in a rather fetching metallic – and looks a little ‘evil’ as a result.   I’ve also added a ‘Turbo Wing’ – that’s a first for me as I thought that these were just an in-game fashion accessory but I’ve now found videos of real world FLB’s sporting them and it really does go well with the dark colorscheme.  I’m thinking of a name for her at present but ‘Witchy Woman’ is a possibility.  Here she is running through a nicely wooded area on the road to Newport from Bend…

We’ve done a bit of sightseeing up the coast in Oregon now, visiting Yaquina Point Lighthouse……and crossing the Historic Yaquina Bridge too…
…The rain never seems far away in Oregon compared with California!

Then came the bombshell from SCS – Server update done and here is a new ETS2 Community Challenge! Deliver cargoes to or from Germany using 10 different countries. Then continue delivering with a community goal of 50 Million Tonnes transported. The idea is that we can show our support to the team working hard to bring those wonderful improvements to the older sections of the map starting with Germany. I sometimes wonder what SCS are thinking! A lot of people have just bought the Oregon DLC and like me are exploring its wonderful scenery. We’ve just got trailer ownership and once again, players are exploring how that works and creating their own trailer skins. To throw a Community Challenge into the mix at this time is, not to put too fine a point on it, asking the community to spread itself very thinly! That said, as you will expect from the previous Community challenge, a lot of us are rolling up our sleeves and getting stuck in!

Despite a Saturday’s football I completed the personal aspect of the challenge on Monday. I also decided to change my Euro VI engines only rule during this challenge because I wanted the home comforts of the MAN TGX so we completed in one of those……Now we’re shifting tonnage as best possible. These shots are from a run early this morning – driving across the newly reworked sections of the German map from Hamburg to the Polish border with a load for Bialystok…

…I’ve since done two more runs, back to Nurnberg and then out to Szeged in Hungary. That’s a lot of driving and 85 tonnes shifted – which is a drop in the ocean with 45 million tonnes still to go for the Community Total. Thank the Lord I’m not alone!

Back in America and this left me having a giggle…… Has to be good for a caption competition 😉

“I sure did but I ain’t paying California rates for diesel!”

“No Herbicide being committed here Officer”

“Honest Officer – They told me it was Hay!”

I’ll leave you with a bit of C.W.McCall – though you’ll need to be quick with your ears to keep up…

‘Ello, ‘ello, what’s going on ‘ere you may ask in the tradition of the cinema’s British Bobby – ‘I thought the subject was things made out of plastic?’ In 2002 Police Community Support Officers came into being. Their introduction was widely seen as the government cutting costs at the expense proper policing. PCSO’s initially had very limited powers and rapidly gained the nickname ‘Plastic Plod’. In the circumstances I couldn’t resist the opportunity for having a play on words 😉 PCSO powers have been strengthened and I believe that most local communities now value their support officers – I always make a point of saying hi if I meet them out on patrol 🙂

Now here is a real example of Plastic Plod…

Catch up with Cee’s Black & White Challenge Here.