Going Back to the Hobby Shop

A quick check on this blog reveals that I haven’t written anything in eleven months.  That is far too long and kind of sad.  After all, this was my flagship blog.   I even transferred it from one platform to another.

The subject of today’s blog is the train shop.  I visited George’s Trains today for the first time in over a year.  And, well, things seem a bit off.  I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but I knew something just wasn’t quite the same.

They’ve moved some products around.  The N scale stuff that I was interested in had moved and there were far fewer pieces around.  The HO scale stuff was still pretty abundant, but there did seem to be a bit less of it.  They still had a huge selection of magazines and books for sale, but it just seemed like there was less.

I also noticed that the prices of stuff had really jumped.  While the engines had always commanded a high price, the rolling stock seemed to be moving in that direction also.  A lot of what I saw was double the price it was five years ago.

I walked around in a bit of dismay.  Is this what the internet has done?  Or is this just the reality of the hobby now?  Are the aging train lovers not being replaced by a new generation?

Maybe I am one of the causes of the problem.  I walked out of the store without buying anything.  I also walked out without really considering buying anything.

What Have I Done?

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One of my regrets of early 2017 was not buying a collection of stamps I came across at a market in Vietnam.  I was tempted, but had an unusual amount of resistance in me that day.  I definitely thought they would make a good souvenir, but either wasn’t sure of the price conversion, whether I wanted them, or just had a good deal of resistance.

Either way, I did come to regret this decision later.

So, when I found myself back in Vietnam again in December of 2017, I no longer had that fabled resistance.  Maybe it was the weeks of regret, maybe it was the mood I was in.  I had taken out too much Dong from the bank machine and wasn’t going to change it back.  I bought more souvenirs this trip that my last one; that is for sure.

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So, now I seem to have started a stamp collection.  I wonder where this will lead?

Looking For My First 180

I took the plunge and bought new darts.

This was harder than it sounds. I don’t want to end up as one of those people who has multiple sets of darts and can’t choose which ones to use.  There is one guy at the club who I watched change which darts he was using more than four times in one night.  He seemed dissatisfied with all of them.  It made me think that the darts probably weren’t the problem.

I could have bought these darts through eBay or some other website (though not Amazon) but I chose to go to my local games store. This was fun as the owner is quite talkative and quite fun. I am a big believer in supporting local enterprises.

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It also gives me a chance to see what other things he has for sale. This usually includes video games, poker tables, pool tables, and of course interesting dart accessories. Did you know that they have a special dartboard with smaller beds to help you improve your aim?  Ever heard of dart golf?

I bought some different shafts and flights to compliment my darts and to make it easy to distinguish them from my previous set at a glance.

My trip to the shop was fun. Sadly, he sells very few pinball machines anymore.

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I wouldn’t mind having this on in the man cave