Sunday, December 28, 2008
Monsey. The town sucks.
No offense if you live there, but if you do, or know anyone who does, tell them to learn how to cross a street. The right way. Look both ways, don't run out into incoming traffic, you know, simple stuff like that.
If it happened once, okay, that's just one moron, capable of living and replicating everywhere. But literally, people are running all over the place neglecting to remember that its Saturday afternoon, people are out DRIVING!
This ISN'T your living room where you can let your kids run willy-nilly and knock stuff over and not really care: this is a HIGHWAY!
My youngest brother put it best when the same thing occurred as we went to the Palisades Mall, and I asked aloud,
"Where do all these idiots come from?"
"They're like the locust from Gears of War: they just keep coming out of holes in the ground!"
You don't wanna know what i was shouting at them.
Anyway, back to the drive-in.
There's one left in this area, up in Warwick, here's their site, http://webusers.warwick.net/~u1006131/driveinmovie/news.htm and I highly recommend that if you're in the area, load up the car with as many people as you can, stuff blankets and lawn chairs in the trunk, and go there for a show. It's well worth the dough, and more fun than going to a regular theater.
There used to be thousands around the country, here's whats left of one of them. The one closest to me was just a few miles from my home in Paramus, now it's the parking lot for the Garden State Plaza.
There wasn't much to this place, and it's now used as storage for a local trucking company.
And a place for me to get my boots muddy taking a few good shots.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Up in Perimont NY, at the end of Ferry road sits this long pier that juts out in to the Hudson. So far, in fact, that you can hear Yonkers across the river. I'd blame that phenomena mostly on the fact that the area was blanketed with dense fog that reduced visibility to less than a hundred feet, and the amount of moisture in the air allows sound to travel more efficiently.... yeah so my point is that we heard stuff that's far away. The pier at the end is dedicated to the untold numbers of American servicemen and women who took ferries from here to fight overseas. The place must be beautiful during the warmer months, but the low visibility and no living plant life gave it a little creepy aura about it. Other than that, it's really a great place to go to, and I'm glad that we went.-AK
Saturday, December 13, 2008
December 7th 2008
We ventured back to Letchworth on Sunday, this time looking for the elusive morgue that I keep hearing about. Today’s historical significance was fresh on my mind all day, even as I worked at school for a few hours. 12/7/1941: Pearl Harbor Day. Sixty-seven years ago today, the Japanese navy bombed Pearl Harbor Hawaii and effectively thrust the United States into WWII.
This place was open, and filled past maximum capacity by this time. What was the reaction of those here? Did they read the paper, listen to the radio, possibly tune into the occasional TV and see President Roosevelt delivering his hastily written Day-Of-Infamy speech before Congress? Were they told what was going on?
I remember my generation’s own Day of Infamy: I was a seventh grader when 9/11 happened. I had trouble processing that this thing was going on less than twenty miles from my classroom in Northern NJ. Maybe I didn’t want to believe it. But I had to. I lost friends that day. We all did.
The principal, a Vietnam Vet and all around good guy, went on the loud speaker and gave us a bit on what had happened. I never heard his exact words, I was standing on line in the cafeteria when some bee-yatch started talking loudly behind me, garbling what I’m told were really meaningful words. I doubt the leaders at Letchworth would have done the same thing.
People think that mental patients are completely insane. Not true. They can –some more than others- process complex thoughts like love and hate, happiness, sadness, and even thoughts of tragedy and loss. The diseases they had were simply conditions, and in no way told who they were as people.
Thoughts like this went through my mind as we drove up to the place, and subsequently saw that the Village was –compared to most times we go- swarmed with all manner of walkers, joggers, and even a lone photographer with equipment far more sophisticated than mine.
I saw the cornerstone of one building, built in 1939. This building had to have been in brand-new condition during the onset of the war. It’s interesting to see how 69 years of use and then neglect have caused it to deteriorate. Every time we go, this place seems to fade more and more, falling in on itself and crumbling away.
I’m rather angry at the vandals who have torn this place apart. I’m sure at one point it was actually a nice place to explore, until local punks, probably all under the legal drinking age, trash the place at night. Setting fires, etc. At least two of the buildings have substantial fire damage, one so bad it’s got a chain link fence surrounding it. No warnings not to enter though and I walked right up to it once and noted that it still smelled like it had burnt down only yesterday. Kind of like a fireplace in the dead of winter.
The Old Hospital Building looms in the distance, heavily damaged by fire, no doubt started by people with more matches then sense. Its three impressive and foreboding stories tall, we focused on the basement and second floor, having already visited the third floor at one point during the summer.
Finding the morgue was easier than we had expected, basically, turn a corner and… there it is. A big clue that we were headed in the right direction was that one of the trays that the deceased would lay on while in the cooler was found down the hallway we were walking in, about a hundred feet from the morgue itself.
I found it interesting that there were no doors on the morgue itself, but reading threads online, I’m guessing some jackass took em off. Also, the area by the cooler had no doors whatsoever. Aren’t those areas supposed to be like, hidden? It was an easy find, which probably explains why it’s been torn apart.
The last photos in this set are shots of the morgue, with several orbs in them. Some believe that orbs are spirits who aren’t manifesting themselves as ‘ghosts’. Are they ghosts? You be the judge.
I’ll leave you guys with this quote, from Charles Little, Superintendent of Letchworth Village in 1912:
“As the law provides that we are to care for epileptic and feeble-minded persons, and as the training for both is along similar lines, it has been thought advisable to classify both feeble-minded and epileptics into groups, separating them only with distinct and suitable buildings.”
They're in your head.
Your mind plays tricks on you.
We didn't go there on 12/7/2008 looking for ghosts.
We went looking for the morgue.
We found it.
And so much more.
They say I'm creative.
That I tell good stories.
And I'm entertaining.
I know something they don't.
I know they're there.
Down the roads to nowhere.
In the towers, nut houses, and fields around us.
I say this to the skeptics:
You can deny everything people tell you.
About what they see, hear and feel.
But when you go there yourself
And these things happen to you...
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
I’m panicking as we walk up the stairs from my basement to the kitchen. My parents are in the process of getting dinner together and we break the news that Nicky isn’t feeling good. Asthma attack. My blood turned to ice for the second time in two hours when she mentioned it to me.
I made record time getting her home to her inhaler, and a steam bath.
To make a long story short, she felt better soon thereafter, but missed dinner with my family and our evening meal was considerably lonelier without her.
After an hour or so, I went and picked her up again, finding that she was back to normal and eager to talk about what transpired at our most recent trip to the Village. Letchworth Village.
It was memorable for the amount of ground we covered in such a short amount of time, the encounters we had with ‘something’, and that I brought my good buddy Dave along for the trip.
After dishing out the flashlights to everybody, we got to the first building, a dormitory by the looks of it, with the front door wide open. Dave led the way, and we got a good tour of the ground floor of the building. The familiar smell of decay and must permeated the air. Venturing into unknown territory, we poked our heads in and out of the rooms along the hallway and were impressed with the lack of graffiti along them. Sure, it was there, but it looks like this building doesn’t appeal much to the vandals.
Perhaps it’s because as soon as we got ten feet away from the front door, it slammed behind us. And the same with the exit door. Wham!
Maybe it was drafty.
We walk around the property near the powerhouse for a bit and decide to venture into the largest building I’d yet seen. From the outside, it looked rather small, but appearances are deceiving and the large airplane-hanger-sized building, dark and odd, was pretty cool on the inside. I stepped on a metal sheet on the floor and saw that there was a space under it. Shining the beam from my light into a small hole, the cavern below looked to be about thirty feet deep with what looked like a forklift down there. Whatever it was, it was yellow and looked like it said HILTI on the top of it. Maybe this is the entrance to the tunnels I keep hearing about, sealed off by the local DPW so no one gets stuck down there.
So we continued into the neighboring power-plant and began checking out the mechanical system when we heard a painfully loud BOOM! Followed by two more as we slunk out of the building.
Walking along the exterior of the building, we entered the lower portion of the building, in the basement area for the life of me, I heard two men’s voices whispering softly. I shout
Nothing. Then BANG!
“If someone is there, make that noise again.” I spoke clearly, like I was talking to someone who wasn’t familiar with English, or, as I look back on it, the way I speak to people with apparent intellectual deficiencies.
“Alex, there’s nothing here, it might have been the wind or-”
“Did you work here?”
“Were you a patient here?”
A five second pause than BANG!
“Do you want to talk to us?”
“Do you want us to leave?”
“Alex, the banging is coming from that way, we best head in that direction.”
So we did, and entered another part of the basement.
“Were you a patient here?”
This time, the bang was fainter, like the striker was loosing enthusiasm.
“Do you want to talk to us?”
“Do you want us to leave?”
This time, I heard a very soft thud. Taking it’s advice, we the area and poked around some buildings used for storage and maintenance equipment, all razed and tattooed with graffiti. I don’t have too many good-quality pics to show, mainly because of bad lighting and a shaky hand, we focused more on simply exploring this time, rather than documenting our trip.
For Dave’s first trip to a place like this, I think he had a good time and his eagerness to walk headlong into darkness with his light off shows bravery that few I explore with possess.
You can check-out any time you like... but you can never leave