Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Ghost Carnival

Road construction took me down a slightly different route the other day.  Having a bit of extra time anyway I decided to just go cross country in more or less the right direction to rejoin the main road.  I ended up passing through a tiny little community.  On the edge of it, along a dirt road, was a little used rail spur.

Peering through a line of parked lumber transport cars I could see unusual things:

Nothing for it then, but to climb over the train cars and walk onto the grounds of some sort of strange, abandoned carnival grounds. There was an entire row of little buildings like this, all weathered past the point of any residual paint.

This was one of those gizmos you were supposed to hit with a hammer to test your manliness.  Ideally ringing the bell.  Note the tipped over trash container....looks rather full as if somebody was here not so long ago.  The archaeologist in me rejoices.

Really the only thing I saw that did not look handmade was this tiny ferris wheel.

All the protecting fences have fallen down where they once stood.  Although if you think about it, having small children wandering around next to railroad tracks seems a bigger potential issue.

I hunted high and low for clues to this enigma.  All I came up with was this:

I had more or less written it off as the eccentric project of some retired fellow with lots of grandchildren and too much time on his hands.  Perhaps the abandonment was due to some health setback, although I did notice that the grass had still been mowed. 

Then as I got in my car to leave I heard a train whistle.  No, not some eerie far away sound, right up close and sounding like it meant business.  I just got my camera aimed in time as a little refurbished passenger train full of happy tourists went zooming by on the main track. 

There has to be a connection, but I saw no clues of what it might be.

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