Friday, September 16, 2011

Book Signing at George's Trains

I did something new yesterday - a book signing. Dan Darnell of George's Trains in Markham (pictured at right, with me in front of the store - above) invited me to participate in George's annual Customer Appreciation Sale and Charity BBQ. This year's charity was Make-a-Wish Foundation. The event was well-attended, and the donation jar was full of a variety of colourful bills. Thanks to everyone's generosity, over $500 was raised at the event! It was great to sign copies of my new VIA Rail book, but even better, to donate a portion of the proceeds to Make-a-Wish. It was also rewarding to answer questions and inquiries about my book, and just talk trains for the afternoon. One of George's employees, S**t (sorry, I can't reveal his complete name due to some ongoing issues to do with online dating) was the genial BBQ operator, shown above with his helpers. S**t's friendly banter kept me and the customers amused (and abused in some cases) during the afternoon. I can't think of a better way to spend the afternoon - situated between a hobby store, an appetizing BBQ, CN's York Sub, and a steady stream of train enthusiasts and VIAphiles. It was great to see Matt Soknacki and John Riddell there, both of whom share my interest in rolling stock (you know, those rattly things behind the power.)
Needless to say, when CN decided to roll a freight through (three westbound and one eastbound during the event) I quickly doffed my chapeau, grabbed my camera and abandoned my station to take some notes and photos. The weather was definitely co-operating!
Thanks to Dan, Richard and all the staff of George's for making this a fun and worthwhile event, all the while helping out a great cause. It was great to meet so many of my fellow enthusiasts and spread the word about my book.



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