Throwback Thursday: Would You Play Trains With Me?

play trains
Playing Trains with Andrew & Sam (July 2007)

In the process of consolidating my writing spaces, I’ve discovered some items that I want to make sure I have in this space. I’ve decided to share them again as “Throwback Thursday” posts, but some are as relevant today as the day I first wrote them. I first shared this post on July 11, 2007. 

“Would you play trains with me?”

Is that not the most significant question ever?

The train table picture above was Andrew’s big birthday present this year. He loves it. We have weighed too many train pieces for them to offer on the table at wants; therefore, we have kept remodeling our track layout to utilize everything. I’ve constructed for our five designs so far this week. The pictured plan is my most recent masterpiece. By mid-morning tomorrow Andrew will deconstruct it. Then, he’ll head downstairs to find me and asked, “Daddy, would you play trains with me?”

I love that question. I love that sound. I love the sweet voice and the innocent look he uses to coax me into dropping what I’m doing and spending 30 to 45 minutes to create for him and Island of Sodor (the boys are seriously into Thomas the Tank Engine). I find great joy in the excitement Andrew and Sam have over a new track layout, and I love that they want to build with me.

Unfortunately, the request doesn’t always come at a convenient time. I had my first major test today and one of my most challenging graduate classes. A class in which I’m determined to maintain an A. Therefore because I find it difficult to study for school while continually being interrupted at our house, I planned to leave for Henderson early enough to accomplish several hours of studying before class. As I was gathering my stuff to head for the door, Andrew entered the room.

“Daddy, would you play trains with me?”

My heart sank. I desperately needed to study for my test. I had so much I needed to cram. If I left that very moment, I’d have about two hours to mug up for the test. I looked at Debbie, and she just smiled. “Would you change his diaper while you’re up there?”

I spent the next half hour laying traffic on Andrew’s new table. When I finished, I demanded his payment in the form of a hug. Then, I raced to Henderson being careful to slow for all the notorious speed traps.

The test was a killer, and I’m not very confident that I performed well. When I returned home tonight, I found Andrew’s train table empty and the tracks spread out over two rooms. But there was a gleam in his eyes he repeated, “Daddy, would you play trains with me?”

And, we got busy designing a new masterpiece.