This hobby has a funny way of coming full circle. After some serious deliberations about my lack of an ability to enjoy my O scale hobby in the comfort of my own home, I decided to start to break out my N scale after my most recent visit to my storage unit.
As many who know me on this forum realize, I've been in the hobby continuously since I was about 6-7. I didn't take the high school break to chase girls or cars. I spent the early years of my hobby happily tinkering away in HO scale cutting my teeth on MDC and Bowser locomotive kits while doing a wonderful job of destroying any minimal value my trains had with my early attempts at custom painting and weathering.
College crept up on me a little too quickly and in the bowels of my architectural college studios I first experimented in N scale with a very crude, not poorly built layout around my studio desk made out of whatever leftover materials I could find. A lot of cardboard, hot glue, and leftover landscape materials went into this temporary layout. It was fun while it lasted.
Upon graduation and my resettlement to Arizona, I stayed with the scale in my first apartment and into my first home in 1994. I had recently ridden many Amtrak long distance trains at the time so I got a skill in custom painting my trains into the Amtrak Phase III scheme for both the Southwest Chief and the Broadway Limited I had been riding. Through 1999, the quality of N became so much better that I started to purchase quite a bit of the locomotives I had always dreamed of as a child in HO. In 2002 I saw my first scale (ish) O locomotive and that is when the bug bit. I have more O scale and O gauge trains than I could hope to enjoy in a lifetime and my dream pursuit is still to have a 2 rail O empire of my own someday but having them stored away at a remote location is more a source of stress than enjoyment.
Fast forward to 2019 and I find myself at a crossroads again. Life circumstances forced me to severely downsize my home putting most of my O in storage. I am working harder than I have in the last 10 years but thankfully at a level of pay commensurate with my experience during that entire period. I am just lacking a place to run trains when I get home at night. N scale seems like the right choice for a small operators railroad that I can once again tinker on for short periods of time and feed the part of the hobby I've been missing.
To start I plan on resurrecting a track plan from way too long ago. Not sure how the proportions will work with the space I have, but that is the fun of the planning.
The goal isn't to accumulate a lot of new stuff other than maybe a few quality locomotives, and upgrade my existing fleet as I can. It's simply to have that place to relieve stress after a long day of work. Funny how a small endeavor like this has brought excitement back to the idea of this hobby again! Now to find the rest of my N scale in the piles and piles of other trains and evaluate my track and transformers for use again.