August 18, 2015

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Hello again!

As many of you know (and the rest of you will find out now), I did not come my role with the Building Trades of Alberta by way of a trade, although I have used a torch and swung a hammer. In fact, when I was in high school, my father was really into trains. Not the train sets that you set up in your basement – the real deals. So he bought an old caboose from the CN graveyard (he explained that they are actually called “vans” in Canada but I still prefer caboose), and we proceeded to tear it apart, right down to the trucks.

Once it was fully disassembled, we blasted the old paint of all the metal and repainted it and reassembled the trucks, even mounting the chassis on a length of track! We then rebuilt the body of the caboose from scratch. From the outside, it looked exactly like a caboose – we even matched the paint to official CN standards to ensure it was the right shade of red. On the inside, however, we turned the caboose into a bunkhouse, complete with sleeping for six, a wood-burning stove and a washroom.

That project took about a year for us to finish, working primarily on the weekends, and taught me a real appreciation for the satisfaction that comes from creating something that requires your hands and your mind to come into existence.

In a way, the work I am doing here is similar, although my tools are not like those used by our membership. I am working to build a community here; through this blog, though our social media presence on Facebook and Twitter and through the BTA website. I can’t do it alone, though – I need your help. I need you to help me connect with as many members (and non-members) as possible. I need you to like the BTA Facebook page so that you can see what we are up to here, and then repost that stuff so your friends can see it too and they can like us as well.

So will you do that? Will you help me build a community? Send people to our Facebook page, our Twitter page and our website so they can see what we have to offer and so they can connect with us and help the community grow. Stop by the website each week and answer the Question of the Week.  Talk about it on the job, at home, at the grocery store – wherever you have people around you.

I look forward to hearing from you (and your friends).


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