Even in li'l ole Bessemer sometimes there are two (or more) important things going on at one time. And I guess it depends on your consideration of what is important.
Last week I had the option of going to the groundbreaking for the Dollar General distribution center, or witnessing something that is rarely seen in this town. Only because of luck did I hear that the Norfolk Southern OCS would be rolling through Bessemer on Thursday.
The OCS is Norfolk Southern's Office Car Special and it carries the executives around. About a dozen people were gathered in the heat near the Hall of History. At least one of the rail fans had a radio from which periodic dispatch messages came through.
Disclaimer: I am not a true rail fan, I don't know all the jargon and may mis-state a fact or two. All I know is that this is the cleanest and shiniest train I have ever seen, and my one day train buddies were very excited about getting to see the OCS.
Here is a picture of the OCS approaching the Hall of History.
Here is big locomotive number 4271.
Originally built in 1952, this diesel conversion was rebuilt in 2007, and is rated at 1,750 hp.
There are a number of cars in the OCS fleet, and I can't tell you if NS 9, the Alabama, was part of this train or not. The train went by fast. I did get a picture of NS 13, the Georgia.
The final car on the train is NS 23 the Buena Vista, a theater car, and is said to be the most photographed car in the OCS. It has a large window at the rear, and several people were in the car watching where they had been.
Here you can see pictures of the entire fleet, from Altoona works.
While waiting we saw three freight trains and the Amtrak train come through. Maybe I'll post some of those pictures later this week.