Having the railway two fields behind the house added an extra layer of excitement to boyhood. Trains were the one thing we shared with Hollywood, so we lurked beside the tracks waiting to blow them up or hijack them. Ear to the track: gauging a train's distance from us was a skill we perfected and a flattened penny was a haul.
A plane crash or train derailment was the sort of excitement a child would wish for. I had outgrown the wish by the time a train did derail behind our house, but I remember the kids of Roscommon heading back through the fields kicking three, four, five footballs each; all spilled from the crash.
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