We all have them... maybe we got out of bed on the wrong side or the alarm didn't go off. Maybe we had a computer crash or maybe we just broke a mirror. No matter what the cause, we will all have a bad day every now and then.
As can be seen from the photo above, railroads have bad days too. Sure, they like to keep them to a minimum or would like to eliminate them all together but sometimes, certain things... broken rail, picked point, ice on the tracks... even a careless motorist pulling across a crossing and you have a made-to-order bad day.
As modelers, we have bad days too. Maybe it's that spilled bottle of paint or maybe it's needing just one more piece of wire to complete a project and the hobby shop is closed. Of course, there's always that dropped part, missing part or deformed part that occasionally appears in that master craftsman kit you wanted to complete.
Our operating sessions are that way too. We can run trains for hours without a hitch but let a guest walk into the train room and engines & cars magically levitate. Bad day for sure.
When disaster strikes the prototype, it is not a laughing matter. It is expensive; even if everyone is safe & sound, there is freight that may be damaged, equipment tht needs repaired and track that must be replaced immediately as in the railroad business, time is money. But modelers are much more fortunate than that. Usually, that derailment just needs the 0-5-0 (your hand) to come along and rerail the offensive locomotive or car. If it's really bad, perhaps that prized loco hit the floor and repairs will be costly. But it's a thing and things can usually be replaced.
Some modelers even have a little fun with these bad days. On a layout that was featured at a recent train show, I saw this really nice looking train lift bridge. Upon closer inspection, I had to smile as someone had a sense of humor when they were completing the scenery.
This must have been a recent accident as there isn't much sign of dirt & other debris that one would expect to rather quickly accumulate around an engine in the drink. In real life, the railroad would have made every effort to get this out of the water as much of it could be salvaged. Still, it made for a nice display and certainly caught my attention.
Now, go have a nice day... :)