I was amused to find how quickly I got used to the noise of passing trains. Before we moved to Ashland, my husband and I were nervous about the frequency of incoming and outgoing trains. The main street ran parallel to the tracks built through the center of town. The visitor center doubles as the station.
We adapted to the noise quickly, despite the fact that our driveway was six car lengths from the railroad crossing. (When the gates are down, the vehicles line up slowly, waiting patiently to get to their homes on the other side.) I think we slept fitfully the first two nights in our new home, But after that, the passing cars & the fine tremors they caused through the house rarely awaken us.
Our house is one of three on a decent sized plot of land split into four lots. The whole parcel once belonged to a family and various members lived in each house. This fact carries some weight with me, seems to complete some long arching theme in my life so far. I left my hometown as my last direct tie to my family’s land was undone. My grandmother’s husband was at last selling their house and land–land my maternal family had lived on since at least the Civil War. A few cousins remained up there, but my branch of the family had moved on. New people would be living there, just as I began a new life on old land myself.
Today is our sixth wedding anniversary. The traditional gifts are iron and candy, symbolizing the enduring and sweet nature of love. Of course we both tried to incorporate some pun or joke related to trains (“iron horse”) but neither of us did very well. That’s ok. As Michael Martone once wrote, “we live near trains” and are reminded every day of time, travel, memory, and new experiences. Tomorrow will mark six months since we moved here and discovered new ways to create our married life together. But those discoveries need their own blog post. For now, I reflect and celebrate.