EDitorial ± 21-May-2002

Going Loco

Peter Pan, like most boys, lived in Never Never Land (pay nothing until this time next year!) and refused to grow up. Which is a roundabout way of making this point: one of the perks of being a parent is that you don't need any excuses to visit toyshops. And so it was that on Saturday morning I could be found in one such shop examining various Brio wooden trains and accessories. OK, so I didn't take any of the kids, but that's my prerogative.
I was wearing corduroy breeches
Digging ditches, pulling switches
Dodging pitches, as I was
Working on the railway
— Poor Paddy, The Pogues

There's been Brio track (actually the cheaper compatible stuff from Early Learning Centre to begin with) in the house since we bought a set for one of the girls some years back. Much like Lego, proper Brio merchandise is pricy, durable, Scandinavian in origin, helps develop learning and is great fun for dads. No surprise that I felt the need to ever-so-slightly modify the track layout before taking the picture shown below.


Youngest child, known as The Boy, is well into everything train-related at the moment. Given his love of throwing, kicking and hammering, I wasn't sure if he'd have the requisite attention span to enjoy the Brio, but I was wrong - he shows a remarkably gentle touch when preparing to push the engine & carriages down the sloped track. And when a locomotive gets hurled across the room, you can tell he's getting tired.

One of Brio's trademark slogans is "Powered by imagination!", which I'd guess predates the newer battery-powered engines that they sell. On the upside, they propel themselves round the track - cool, as The Boy says. On the downside, I sometimes find one up against the skirting board having long since exhausted its 1.5V AAA power supply.

If You Take Away With You Nothing Else

  1. I took away a Train Engineer's Freight Set at the weekend
  2. I bought it to improve my children's cognitive skills, spatial comprehension and problem solving
  3. I really bought it 'cos I like playing with choo-choos

Be seeing you!