I've actually got two projects to do next (besides fix the signals):
* As I mentioned in the last blog entry, I'm thinking of placing an abandoned farm between Alma and Wrights. Good for the period, but it'll get rid of the last bit of empty, unoccupied space... and I might want to remind viewers they're looking at a desolate canyon.
* All the nice photos face uphill towards Wrights because the sky disappears in the other direction. (That's really a shame, as I really like this photo of the station and the hillside.) I've got backdrop material to finish the backdrop here, and then I need to start putting scenery on the bare styrafoam at the other end of the Alma siding.
That second idea will need me to make some uncomfortable choices. The tracks curve onto a shelf built behind Los Gatos and over the staging tracks; I've been hesitant to put in scenery here, partially because I wasn't sure what to do, and partially because I'm going to find it really hard to maintain the tracks underneath once the scenery goes in. So if this really is a five-year or ten-year layout, what are the odds I'll need easy access to those tracks, or can I be enough of a contortionist to twist under the benchworks to clean the tracks?
It's also exciting for me at the same time; Alma's been a very unloved point on the railroad, but this month's scenery has been coming out wonderfully and makes the spot eye-catching. Before the scenery, it was just a siding on a shelf. Once the scenery went in, it became very easy to imagine what's really happening--a train pulling aside on train orders, a fast passenger blowing through town without stopping. Just running trains through here for the photos has been great fun. It'll be interesting to see how the other half of the siding turns out when scenery goes in.