I have had many hobbies over the years, but have always had model trains in the back of my mind. About 3 years ago I told my roommate that I was going to get into this hobby, but nothing ever came of it. Then this morning, when we were at the hobby store, she said "didn't you say you wanted to get into trains?"...So, I bought a couple of layout kits to build, but now realize that I need to have a train set and track too...duh...so, here I am, searching on the internet for people who will be helpful and understanding while I begin this hobby from scratch! I am going to Home Depot this week to buy a 3'x5' board and some foam so that I can build a platform, and I have been looking on eBay for train sets in N gauge, which is the gauge I decided to go with, as it will take less room, I only have about a 12' section of the spare room to work with. I want to use Union Pacific engines, as that is the trains that run around here. I don't know that I want to use a specific "place", I have worlds upon worlds in my imagination and figure I should be able to come up with a couple of towns to name my railroad from. I have been reading around in this forum all afternoon, and you guys sound like a great group, so I look forward to learning a LOT from you all.