If you've taken photos as long as I have, I'm sure you've had some "down" periods when you didn't get out quite so much, and didn't pursue the hobby as vigorously. It can be attributed to issues at the work place, at home or other personal relationships, health problems, or just some short-term burn out. I think my longest period was 1980-83. If you go through my slides, it's obvious I didn't shoot much through those years. I kicked back into high gear in late '83, by the way. But---at least I did have sufficient motivation to go to Dante, VA two or three times in '80 and '81 to see and photograph the last four Clinchfield F-units in regular service. On July 23, 1981, here's the road's only FP7---number 200. This unit was purchased to handle the remains of the Elkhorn City-Spartanburg passenger train, and for years, it was the only unit on the railroad with a steam generator. In the '50s and early to mid-'60s, the annual Santa train consisted of a freight F7, four or five priority box cars of freight that might have been waiting on the next southbound at Elkhorn City, then the 200 (for steam only), and office car 100. It was truly a mixed train, and a strange one at that. When 4-6-0 number 1 made its debut on the train in 1968, the 200 was repainted for the occasion (gray and yellow) and placed directly behind the Ten Wheeler to supply steam to the cars and also the needed tractive effort to get over the road (the One Spot could handle just two cars, unless it was downhill!). In any event, I'm glad I purchased a roll of film and shot a few scenes of the 200 and her three sisters. I can almost smell the aroma of exhaust and diesel fuel in this scene and hear the sound of all those EMD prime movers in idle.
From a hint of "Bee" (NKP 765), colorful "Bees" (KCS), "Bees" w/ "attitude", to "Bees" that "sting" your eyes, in their own way they have "Bee" on display! Equipment that "Buzzes" with Yellow & Black colors! ("Bees" can still "Bee" entering this "hive"!)