Trammy the Trolley Car  
    


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the story of Trammy the Trolley Car

Episode 2

“Down on the Farm”

When Trammy awoke the next morning he sleepily squirted his washers and wiped his windscreens and nervously looked about. He was in a paddock beside the hedge, beside the road. He could see the farmhouse and the farmyard and the chickens, and the pigs, and a big old barn with weeds growing up around the walls.

The sun was shining and as he looked around, Trammy thought to himself that things could certainly be a lot worse.

" I suppose this is better than ending up in the wood bin " he said with a sigh, to nobody in particular.

" I should say so ! " he heard a voice say.

He looked over to the farmyard fence, and he could see a large golden rooster with a huge beak and a feathery tail eyeing him up and down.

" Oh Hello " said Trammy. " I didn’t see you there. I’m Trammy, and I used to be...that is.... I am a trolley car, in the city ".

" Well is that right ?  " chuckled the rooster. " and just what does a trolley car do then, Trammy "

" I take passengers around the city......that is, I used to....but ...now... I can’t " sighed Trammy, staring sadly at the ground, and suddenly realising that he wasn’t on the funny old truck anymore.

" Oh my goodness, no wonder I felt so damp, I’m sitting flat on the ground ! " he cried.

" It doesn’t look like you can go anywhere to me " squawked the rooster, flapping his way down from the fence and striding slowly over to where Trammy had been set down.

Trammy on the farm

" Aren’t you supposed to have wheels under there ? " he chuckled again, cocking his head over and bending down stare up at Trammy’s underside.

" Yes, that’s right ! " said Trammy, wondering who this fellow was who was inspecting him so curiously. " But the workmen took them out, and now I don’t have my motor any more either "

" Well, you’re not going to be much help round here then, are you ? " said the rooster. "and it’s a long way to the city from here without wheels, old chap "

" Just who are you ? " asked Trammy wryly, becoming a little annoyed at this fellow’s cheeky attitude.

" I’m Robert, the rooster around here " snorted the bird " and you’d better not give me any trouble, Trammy, ’cos I’m in charge here, got it ! " And he turned and strode off.

" I don’t think I like him very much " Trammy thought to himself as he watched Robert stride away.

" I think he was making fun of me, " he let slip out loud.

Robert The Rooster

" Just stating the facts, old boy " called out Robert the rooster, without slowing down or even turning round. " You’re not going anywhere at all without wheels so you had better get used to it. I’ll be seeing you, and remember, I’m in charge round here " And he spread his wings out wide so that he looked huge and began to laugh heartily.

" ..take passengers around the city, ho ho hah hah.... he cant even move round the farmyard, the silly old thing " chortled Robert, flapping his way back up on to the fence.

" Have you ever been to the city? " Trammy called out to him across the paddock.

" Just once, " replied Robert the rooster, " and that was enough for me. Dreadful place, the city. Too noisy, too smelly, too many people. No place for a country gentleman like me, oh no. I had a close call there you know, it was back in ‘38. Farmer Fred was having a bit of a rough patch and he took me and some of the others off to the city to see if he could sell us, and raise some money to pay his bills. That upstart Rupert nearly took over my job while I was away ! "

" But what happened ? You’re still here ! " puzzled Trammy, not really knowing why he wanted to know.

" Yes, well, stroke of luck really. Farmer Fred met an old school chum by chance who was a businessman in the city. Used to be a farm boy here when I was young as I remember. Anyway, he lent Farmer Fred enough money for him to get back on his feet again, and he didn’t have to sell me. Lost ten of my best wives though, dash it all ".

" 10 wives ! " spluttered Trammy. " How can you have ten wives ? "

" Because I’m a rooster, old chap " smiled Robert " You certainly don’t know much about the country do you ? All the hens here are my wives "

Trammy thought quietly for a moment, and decided he did not want to know anymore. He just didn’t think he was going to get on very well with Robert at all. Robert strutted up and down the fence, squawking orders to the hens who were all starting to gather and stare at Trammy.

" There’s your new house, just like I told you " squawked Robert. " Go on now, get inside and get on with it "

" Get on with it ? " thought Trammy, whatever could he mean.

He soon found out. Every day, all day long, the hens clucked and clucked and clucked, and every morning at 5 a.m., just as Trammy was dreaming nicely about rolling down the tracks in the city, Robert the rooster would wake him up with a loud " Cock-a-doodle doo ! "

Then Farmer Fred's wife would shuffle over from the farmhouse, rustle through Trammy's cabin and come out with a large basket of fresh laid eggs.

Trammy thought this was rather boring, having to sit there day in, day out, listening to the hens clucking and Robert the rooster crowing but at least he was doing something useful. He spent the days remembering his family and wondering what they were doing, and counting off their numbers just to pass the time of day, and at night time he would dream of his happy days in the city, and all the friends he left behind. It certainly was a quiet and lonely life in the country for a trolley car who was used to being busy and seeing lots of people everyday.         

One morning, just after Robert the rooster had woken everybody up, Trammy heard some cheery whistling coming down the bumpy lane that led to the paddock. Soon he saw a man walking along carrying a large canvas kit bag. He wore a brown wide-brimmed hat that shaded his face from the morning sun and Trammy wondered who this could be, as he had never seen that hat before.

" Good morning " chirped  Trammy, as friendly as he could be, hoping that the stranger would stop and talk. He did so miss chatting with all his friends in the city, being stuck in the paddock like he was.

" Well howdy there, fella " drawled the man, dropping his kit bag and putting his hands on his hips " You look like you’re a little lost ".

" Lost ? " replied Trammy " I suppose I am in a way. I mean....I know where I am, but I’m not where I’d really like to be......er, that is..."

Trammy did not quite know what to say next. He didn’t think such a simple " Good morning " would be quite so complicated.

" Well, I bet you aren’t, fella " replied the man, who took of his hat and held it flat in front of himself " You’re a long way from home, I reckon, and you’re feeling a little homesick for sure ".

" Yes, you’re right there " Trammy groaned wistfully " . Then remembering his manners he said " Anyway, its a lovely morning, and who knows, this could be my lucky day.”

He suddenly felt a warm feeling in his timbers. This man was being very nice to him and that hadn’t happened in a very long time.

“ I’m Trammy, Trammy the trolley car. Pleased to meet you er..er..Mr ..er..er ", he stammered, looking for a response from the visitor.

Trammy on the farm

" M’names John " said the man " John the joiner . I’m a carpenter and joiner, I build things for people. Farmer Fred has asked me down to see about some alterations to you "

Alterations ! Trammy shivered and began took shake a little.

" Oh no " he cried " not more pieces to be taken off me. Soon there’ll be nothing left of me ! " and he suddenly felt very gloomy.

" Cheer up, fella " said John the joiner " I’ll be gentle with you, I’m very good at what I do. I’m a craftsman and I don’t do shoddy work, you’ll see ".

This made Trammy feel a little better, but he still didn’t like the thought of being altered any more than he had been already. He remembered the days he spent in the workshop back in the city getting some of his timbers replaced. It had tickled a bit, but the coachbuilders were very careful about their work. He wondered what Farmer Fred wanted done to him and he hoped it wasn’t going to leave him too weak to hold himself together. He decided John the joiner was a nice man for trying to cheer him up so thoughtfully and so to help make the alteration seem nothing to worry about he would think of him as gentle John. But he still thought it might tickle a bit.

Just then, Farmer Fred came rolling across the paddock, chewing on a long piece of straw. " Morning John " he said, the straw dropping from his lips as he spoke. " Lovely morning "

" I reckon that it is Fred, good morning to you " said John. " I’ve just met your chicken house ".

Trammy didn’t like to hear himself described as a chicken house, and he wondered if he had misjudged John. Perhaps he wasn’t so gentle after all.

" Good " said Farmer Fred " Now don’t let him make you feel guilty. He’s my property and I’ll do what I like with him "

Trammy was really starting to feel quite low. Chicken house..... property... whatever was he going to be called next ?

" Sure enough Fred, I’ll do what you ask. Tell me what it is you want " said John the joiner.

Farmer Fred spread his arms wide across Trammy’s middle. " Here " he said. " I want a big opening for the pigs to get through, when its cold out. They can come in here, " Farmer Fred went on, drawing the shape of a large opening in the dust gathered along Trammy’s side panel with his stubby finger.

The pigs ! Trammy’s heart sank. He was devastated. This was it. The beginning of the end. The rot would set in. He was doomed. He’d seen them sloshing about in the bottom of the paddock. They’d beat him to pieces inside, those horrible, muddy beasts !

" Well, I reckon I could do that, but I don’t think it will help make this coop last any longer " drawled John " It just seems a such a shame, though, a shame to cut up this fine coachwork to make a door in the side. Maybe there’s a better way ? "

" I don’t want a better way, John " growled Farmer Fred. " He’s just an old wreck, and he only needs to last a couple of years and I’ll have had my money back. Now you just make that hole like I said." And he turned and rolled off back toward the farmhouse.

Trammy began to weep, big blobby tears rolling down his front panel ." An old wreck, that’s what I’ve become " he sobbed quietly to himself. He was very unhappy.

John the joiner turned and smiled at Trammy. He could see Trammy was upset, and he just stood quietly for a while.

" Well, go ahead then, " sniffed Trammy " You might as well get on with it. Please be careful of my posts. I need them to hold up my roof you know "

John the joiner dropped his gaze toward the ground and just stood there for what seemed like ages to Trammy. Then he bent down and opened his kit bag and pulled out his workman’s apron and buckled it around his waist. It was all lined up with tools and had a big heavy looking hammer hanging from the side.

Trammy started to tingle with anticipation of what was to come next. John the joiner strolled slowly over to where Farmer Fred had drawn the lines in the dust on Trammy’s panel. As he bent down to size up the job his head tilted over to one side and he looked up at Trammy’s underside into where the axles had been removed and he seemed to be thinking about something. His hand reached into the pocket of his apron and he took out his pencil and began to draw on Tammy’s panel.

" Oh well " said Trammy " at least I’ll be useful to the pigs for a while. That’s something I suppose. "

John said nothing and just kept on scratching away with his pencil on Trammy’s side panel. Then he stood up and gazed up at the sky.

" How strange, " thought Trammy to himself " What on earth is he doing ? "

John the joiner just stood there gazing at the sky and occasionally rubbing his chin. Then suddenly he dropped his apron off, pushed it into his kitbag and turned to walk off up the lane. He began walking faster and faster, almost breaking into a run.

" Hey, where are you going ? " Trammy called after him. " You’ve left your bag on the ground here. "

" Can’t talk now, fella " John the joiner called back over his shoulder " I’ve got an idea. I’ll be back later. Keep a watch on my tools, will you ? "

And with that he trotted off into the distance, his hat clutched in his hand.

" O.k. then " called Trammy after him, not sure quite why he felt he should.

Trammy was puzzled. " What a strange fellow. " he said out loud, and then thought to himself " Farmer Fred is going to be furious. Oh well, at least I’m still in one piece...sort of… " suddenly remembering he’d lost quite a few pieces lately.

" I think you’ve scared him off, Trammy. " cackled Robert the rooster.

" Stroke of luck I’d say. " droned a huge black bull who’d been watching the proceedings from the paddock and had strolled over to where Robert the rooster was perched on the fence.

" I’m Boris, Boris the bull, and I’d just like to say well done ".

Trammy was startled and didn’t quite know which way to look.

Boris the Bull

" Hello Boris. " said Trammy. " I really didn’t say anything, honest. Please don’t tell Farmer Fred. He’ll be furious. It.....it... wasn’t my fault. "

" Nonsense, lad " droned Boris the bull " You psyched him out. Plain and simple. You scared him off, no risk. You’ve got to stick up for yourself round here. "

“ How long have you been here, Boris ? ”, asked Trammy

“ All my life lad “, replied Boris the bull. “ Every so often I go out on the truck to the other farms for a while. I’ve got a job to do too you know ”.

But Trammy didn’t know, and he thought quietly for a moment. What ever could he mean by that ?

“ Just got back last night while you were asleep actually. ” Boris the bull went rumbling on. “ You certainly seem to have had some bad luck lately, haven’t you lad ? “

" Just you get about your business, Boris " squawked Robert the rooster, spreading his wings. " There’ll be trouble over this, you’ll see ." and he began flapping and crowing as loudly as he could.

" Farmer Fred ! Farmer Fred ! " he crowed " Come here quick. The builder has run off ! Trammy sent him off ! I saw the whole thing ! "

" Oh Robert. " Trammy wailed " Please don’t. I never said anything at all, I promise. "

" Never you mind trying to hush it up " squawked Robert the rooster. " I’m just doing my job. I don’t want to get the chop because of you. "

“ Get the chop ! That doesn’t sound very good at all ! ” said Trammy anxiously to himself as Robert the rooster bounced about in front of him making puffs of dust that swirled around in the breeze.

Just then Farmer Fred burst out of the barn to see what all the commotion was about. He waddled over to where Robert the rooster was perched on the fence and they began mumbling in low voices, and looking sideways at Trammy. A frown creased Farmer Fred’s forehead and he walked slowly over to confront Trammy.

" What’s this I hear then ? " he growled. " You frightened off my worker ! How dare you !"

" No! " Trammy blurted out loudly " I said nothing. I just asked him to be careful with my posts "

" I’ll give you careful " said Farmer Fred, scowling " If you want a job done properly you have to do it yourself ! ” he muttered.

“ I’ll be back with the chainsaw after my lunch and we’ll have no more of this nonsense. I’ve tried to do the right thing by you and that’s the thanks I get. "

" Told you so ! " squawked Robert the rooster " You’re for it now Trammy, you'll see. I told you so ! I told you so ! "

Chainsaw ! This was turning into a very bad day for Trammy. Could things get any worse? He looked at the ground and his timbers shivered.

" I’m sorry. " he sniffed " I didn’t mean to. I was just a bit nervous, you see. I didn’t mean to scare him off. "

" Scaring off the builder. Well, I never.... " grumbled Farmer Fred, turning and rolling off across the paddock, hurummpphing as he went.

Trammy suddenly felt very lonely indeed. It seemed to him that he didn’t to have a friend left in the world anymore.

" Don’t worry, Trammy " droned Boris the bull " I’ll give you a hand if Farmer Fred gets too rough with you. He’s a bit scared of me, you know. I’m much bigger than him. "

" Thank you, Boris " sniffed Trammy, but he really didn’t see how Boris could help. After all, he was Farmer Fred’s property too.

After a while Farmer Fred came rolling back across the paddock carrying a huge chainsaw, some earmuffs and a big pair of safety goggles.

" Oh no " Trammy said to himself " Look at the size of that thing. I think this is going to more than tickle. "

Farmer Fred set the machine on the ground and put on his safety gear. He did look rather fearsome. Just as he was about to pull the starting cord of the chainsaw, Boris the bull let out a loud bellow.

" OOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO " he went.

Farmer Fred jumped around and dropped the chainsaw on the ground. Boris the bull began charging around the paddock, leaping and jumping and generally looking dangerous. Farmer Fred looked a bit nervous, not quite knowing what to do at first. Then he scurried off towards the barn as fast as he could go.

" Oh thank you Boris " called Trammy " but I’m sure he’ll be back "

" And I’ll keep giving him a hard time " droned Boris the bull, flicking his tail angrily in the air.

Pretty soon, Farmer Fred came out of the barn carrying a cattle prod and moved gingerly over to where Boris the bull was eyeing him up and stamping the ground and snorting loudly. Farmer Fred got closer and closer, holding the prod out in front of him.

" No Boris, no " called Trammy " I don’t want you to get hurt because of me ! "

" Hah " snorted Boris the bull " He doesn’t scare me Trammy. I’ll soon see him off. "

" ZAP ! " went the cattle prod on Boris the bull’s rump

" OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooooooooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOO ! " yelped Boris the bull, his rump smarting from the shock.

" No Farmer Fred, NO ! " cried Trammy " Stop it. He’s only trying to help me. Please stop. Come on then. Come and cut me open. I don’t mind, really ! "

Both Farmer Fred and Boris the bull stopped in their tracks and turned to look at Trammy.

" Why I’ve a good mind to ...." snorted Boris the bull turning towards Farmer Fred again with a menacing look in his eye.

" Now you see here " growled Farmer Fred " You heard him, he doesn’t mind. Now stop this nonsense, Boris. "

Boris the bull snorted again. He didn’t think it was right, and he felt like giving Farmer Fred a good seeing to.

Farmer Fred started gingerly back toward Trammy, holding the prod out behind himself. Boris the bull just glared at him and stomped at the ground some more.

Farmer Fred stooped to pick up the chainsaw, dropped the prod and swiftly pulled the starting cord. The engine roared, smoke belching from it’s exhaust and the chain zinging noisily.

He started over toward Trammy’s panel and lined the blade up with the marks he had drawn in the dust earlier. Boris couldn’t stand it any longer. He charged toward Farmer Fred with his head bowed and his hooves thundering. Farmer Fred didn’t hear him coming what with the noise of the chainsaw and his earmuffs on. Robert the rooster flapped his wings excitedly.

Robert the Rooster on the fence

" Lookout, Farmer Fred, lookout ! " he squawked. But Farmer Fred didn’t hear him either.

WHOOMPH went Boris the bull, straight into Farmer Fred’s backside.

" Whooooaaa " shouted Farmer Fred as he flew through the air, the chainsaw arcing into the sky out of his grip and narrowly missing Robert the rooster perched on the fence.

" WAAAAAAARK ! " sqwarked Robert the rooster. " You fool, you nearly killed me ! "

Boris the bull turned and snorted again, lining up toward the fence where Robert the rooster was hanging on by the tips of his claws.

" N..N..Now dont you go doing anything silly, Boris " stammered Robert the rooster.

But it was too late. Boris the bull had his dander up and he was not in the mood for orders from Robert the rooster. He thundered toward the fence, hitting the railing and splintering it into a thousand pieces and sending Robert flying through the air as well !

Farmer Fred staggered to his feet rubbing his bruised bones ruefully.

" Ooooh ! " he moaned " I’ll get you for this Boris, you see if I don’t " and he lunged forward to where the cattle prod lay on the ground, tripping over John the joiner’s kitbag of tools as he went and landing face down in the muddy paddock.

Trammy was aghast. He couldn’t believe that he was the cause of so much trouble. What a day he’d had ! He was sure that Farmer Fred would have him chopped up now after all this commotion.

Just then Trammy heard a familiar whistle coming down the lane. He looked up and saw the big brown hat bobbing along beside the hedge and pretty soon John the joiner came trotting around the corner. He stopped suddenly and put his hands on his hips, just like he had earlier.

" What IS going on ? " he said ", reaching up to tip his hat and scratching his head underneath.

" John, thank heavens you’ve arrived " said Trammy feeling rather relieved to see John the joiner’s friendly face. " Just look at this mess ! "

Farmer Fred was rolling around in the mud, trying to get to his feet, and John the joiner moved over to where he was tumbling about to give him a hand up.

" I don’t need any more help from you, John " he spluttered, pushing him away. " You've caused quite enough trouble already, running off like that. And what do you mean by leaving that bag laying about where people can trip over it."

" Now just hold on a minute there, Fred, " John the joiner protested " You're getting yourself all worked up over nothing. I've just had an idea I think you're gonna like."

" I don’t want to hear anymore of your ideas, John and that’s a fact ! " Farmer Fred ranted on, " I've had enough nonsense for one day. I'm just going to chop up that troublesome trolley car and use him to keep me warm this winter. And look at the state of that fence."

" Come now, Fred " said John the joiner " I've never known you to throw good money away like that, and my idea will solve all your problems at once ! "

Trammy was shivering at the prospect of being chopped up. He thought that sounded like it would hurt a lot, and he wondered what it was that John the joiner was thinking.

" Let's go over to the house and have a cup of coffee, Fred, " said John the joiner. " Let me explain to you what I have in mind. "

" Well, I don't know " said Farmer Fred, rubbing his chin and flaking off the mud that was starting to crack and dry.

Boris the bull was snorting menacingly and still stamping at the ground occasionally, and grumbling away in his throat.

" I think everyone should just cool down a little, what do you say, boys ? " John the joiner went on.

" Oh yes, please ! " blurted out Trammy.

" Hrummph " snorted Boris the bull.

" Well.....alright then, John " said Farmer Fred, who was starting to feel quite sore anyway from where Boris had hit him in the backside.

" Squuaaaaaaaarrkkkkk " said Robert the rooster " I don’t want any more trouble out of you two. I'm in charge round here, get it ?"

Boris the Bull turned and stamped of up the paddock, tossing his head in the air and snorting some more.

" In charge, indeed " snorted Boris the Bull " well you're not in charge of me. "

And he continued off up the paddock, waving his tail in the air with a menacing flick.

So Farmer Fred and John the joiner set off across the paddock toward the farmhouse, leaving Trammy and Robert the rooster to survey the damage.

" It'll cost a pretty penny to put that right " said Robert the rooster, strutting up and down where the fence had just been demolished. " I bet they'll need to use some of your timber to fix this up, old chap."

Trammy just stared at the wreckage of the fence and said nothing. He felt like he had reached the end of his good humour and was surprised to feel himself becoming a bit annoyed.

" Oh, why didn't he just do as he was asked " he thought out loud " I'm just not worth all this trouble. "

" Trouble, yes indeed " agreed Robert the rooster " You city types certainly seem to take it with you wherever you go."

" Well, I didn't ask to come here, you know. " retorted Trammy, not really liking his grumpy response. " Life used to be so much fun and so simple. All I had to do was do my job everyday and everyone was happy. Now it seems like I've caused so much unhappiness."

" I knew you would be trouble the minute I clapped eyes on you. " snapped Robert the rooster, rather nastily. " You city types are all the same."

And he fluttered off across toward the farmhouse as well to see if he could find out what John the joiner was up to.

After a while John the joiner and Farmer Fred emerged from the farmhouse and started toward Trammy.

"Oh no. " said Trammy out loud, " it looks like this is it. "

Robert the rooster was strutting along behind like he always did when Farmer Fred was about to make an announcement of some importance. Some of the hens fell in behind too, all clucking and bustling and wondering what was going to happen next.

The two men stopped a little ways off from Trammy and shook hands. Then John the joiner began to trot over to Trammy with a big smile on his face.

Framer Fred just turned and walked off toward the barn shaking his head and rubbing his hands together and chuckling to himself.

Trammy was starting to shake again. His nerves had been put on edge by all the carry on that day.

" Its all O.k. Trammy " said John the joiner happily. " I've got some good news for you. You're coming home with me. "

" W...W...With you ? " stammered Trammy, wondering what on earth he could mean.

Boris and Robert

" I've done a deal with Farmer Fred, " John the joiner went on. " I'm going to fix up his fence for free, and I've got a couple of big packing crates at home that will make a fine chicken coop, and a shed for the pigs. I've traded them all for you. "

Trammy wasn't sure how he should feel, being traded for a couple of packing crates. But then, things had been going pretty badly anyway up till now, so anything might be better than where he was at that moment.

" B....B....But what are you going to do with me , can I ask? " enquired Trammy.

" Well, Trammy, you'll just have to wait and see, " replied John the joiner " but I've got an idea I think you are gonna like. "

And with that he scooped up his kit bag and trotted off down the lane again.

" Well, whatever next ? " said Trammy as John the joiner trotted off up the bumpy lane. He was feeling a bit insecure, but he was starting to get a strange feeling that things might turn out alright after all.

 

To be continued………………..


 

 
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