Encounter the big, black locomotive at Salvador Perez Park. Given how enormous it is, it’s surprising how easily you can miss it as you motor down St. Francis Drive. After you make the turn and come to the entrance of Salazar Perez Park, suddenly it’s the largest thing you can see—an ominous, black, kettle-shaped, vintage locomotive on permanent display. When my boy was tiny, this park was a great place to go for an hour’s push on the swings. The safe and enclosed playground is great for toddlers.
The train is a 501 ton behemoth given to the park by the Santa Fe railway in 1959. Now it sits as if it will never leave, and I’ll be able to eat lunch next to it’s buff, chalky blackness forever. It’s a black that looks to be made out of the essence of soot itself. This coal burning monster is made out of so much metal it probobly doesn’t cool until late into the summer evening, when it dreams about a Santa Fe’s fading past.