Prometheus, Unfinished

Seen below is the unfinished reactor core of a nuclear power plant. I had visited this place before, and posted about it in more detail in this previous post. But after that initial exploration, I began visualizing a shot that wasn’t possible on that first visit. At a different time of year, the sun would … Continue reading Prometheus, Unfinished

Paths and Palaces of Sintra

About telve miles west of Lisbon lies Sintra, a town which has been home to the most affluent of Portuguese society for centuries. Nestled in a small mountain range named for the town, its elevation and accompanying milder temperatures had made it an ideal summer destination for kings and nobility looking to escape the sweltering … Continue reading Paths and Palaces of Sintra

Springtime

Chicagoans like to complain about spring. It goes straight from winter’s cold to summer heat, they say, as if unaware that the couple months of fluctuating temperatures, frequent rain, and gusty winds is, in fact, what spring looks like in the Midwest. It’s as if people expect our dark and raw winters should immediately give … Continue reading Springtime

Saint Sialia Church

A year and a half ago, on a previous visit to Philadelphia, we tried and failed to get into this church. Our consolation prize would be the rectory, in which fire extinguisher hanky-panky would leave one of our party down and out for the night, a victim of suggestive pantomime gone terribly wrong. (She was … Continue reading Saint Sialia Church

Trolley Graveyard

In a ravine in the woods of rural Pennsylvania sits an impressive collection of decaying trolleys and railcars. It is on private property, owned by a man who set out to restore and possibly resell them. Unfortunately, once word of these cars leaked out, it was only a matter of time before they inevitably were … Continue reading Trolley Graveyard

Vandalia State Hospital

The largest psychiatric hospital in the world once operated in a small, nondescript southern town. From its founding in the early nineteenth century, it steadily grew as the decades passed and as the treatments it offered evolved from the primitive to the merely misguided. Ultimately, the idea of keeping the mentally ill locked away en … Continue reading Vandalia State Hospital

The Great Outdoors

Every time I’ve returned to Gary the last few years, it’s with a feeling that I’m coming to flog a dead horse. After all, I’ve been visiting this city for going on fifteen years, and it always seems there isn’t much left to see. But each time, the horse is still floggable. Or alive. Or … Continue reading The Great Outdoors

Tennessee Gothic

A mansion tucked away in the wilds of Tennessee stands empty. Its isolated location has no roads leading to it, and no signs of any infrastructure surrounding it. There isn’t even a visible driveway, any pavement having long reverted to dense grasses and underbrush. This would suggest that the house has been abandoned a long … Continue reading Tennessee Gothic

A School in the Hills

A prominent hill in a small rural town is the site of a former military academy turned private boarding school. As it is surrounded by a quiet subdivision, we decided to get there before sunrise. In the dishwater gray predawn light, we trudged along a sleeping lane until we reached a cul-de-sac, then pushed through … Continue reading A School in the Hills