Dependable Erection

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Unnatural disaster

On the way down east last month we passed a scene of destruction and chaos on Highway 24 east of Beulaville so inviting that i had to schedule our return trip in such a way to allow time to stop and photograph it. At first i assumed it was a trailer park disaster, a tornado or fertilizer bomb exploding unintentionally. I later learned, after asking around town, that it's actually a recycling facility for old trailers. Can't say that there appeared to be anyone actually, you know, recycling anything.

Have a look:

I've spent a bit of time the past two weeks working on these photos, and hope to have them hanging somewhere in the next month or two. More to follow later.



  • Those pictures remind me of all the boats I saw in Galveston, October 2008 after a hurricane had come through. Many boats had been dragged from wherever they landed to the sides of the highways and such. Other boats that had landed in vacant lots (or lots that had been vacant before something swept their earlier residents away, to be replaced by the boats) just stayed where they were.

    BTW: your pix also make me think of a fantastic photo exhibit on the first floor of the Durham Arts Council through March 21. Transient Memories - Atmospheric Color Photographs by Steven Gregory.

    I encourage you to check it out.

    By Blogger Marsosudiro, at 3:23 PM  

  • Oh man, we've driven by this mobile home graveyard numerous times on our way down to Emerald Isle, and I always wanted to go check it out. I'm looking forward to your pictures.

    Wonder if we can make it something of a tourist attraction? I kind of figured they wouldn't want people poking around too much.

    By Blogger Jeremy T, at 4:14 PM  

  • Really? We go down to EI annually, and i never noticed it before this trip.

    at any rate, there's a grey house visible in the background in one of the photos i'll post tomorrow that appears to be lived in. Nobody came out to ask what i was doing, and i didn't make any effort to hide myself. Fully expected a couple of junkyard dogs to come up and check me out, though none were around.

    By Blogger Barry, at 4:21 PM  

  • I wouldn't let Bruuster out of the car. Didn't want his little puppy paws walking around in that toxic waste dump.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:06 PM  

  • Apropos of very little, one of those pictures really made me want to find an old brick warehouse somewhere and weld the upper hull of a school bus onto the roof as a recycled clearstory.

    By Blogger Michael Bacon, at 10:16 AM  

  • @Barry:

    We go down a few times a year (since my folks own a place there and are kind enough to let us use it), so my reported "numerous times" doesn't necessarily mean it's been there for all that long. I'd place its first appearance at some time within the past few years, with the disclaimer that my memory is really crappy with respect to such things.

    One town on the current 24 route - and it may well be Beulaville, though I can't really recall with any certainty - has a really awesome looking old school that appears to be abandoned or at the very least somewhat neglected.

    I'm really intrigued by the decaying middle-of-nowhere towns in that part of the state; it's like a whole different world out there. I remember the route from before I-40 was completed (back when it took a good 5 hours to get to the southern coast on shoddy 2-lane state roads), and you went through some serious backwater towns back then.

    I'm kind of tempted to take the old way just to see what's happened to it; I'm guessing the reduced traffic hasn't done those little towns any economic favors.

    By Blogger Jeremy T, at 12:38 PM  

  • Oh, my favorite photo is #2. Empty chair outside, road to nowhere, and I really like the perspective.

    Might be cool in B&W.

    By Blogger Jeremy T, at 12:55 PM  

  • Thanks - i've pretty much desaturated that image down to almost black and white. The final print will have a bit more contrast, and some false color to, i hope, enhance the otherworldliness i wanted to convey.

    Two years ago, we took back roads all the way home, and stopped off in Farmville to visit Duck-Rabbit brewery. That was a fun trip, but yeah, there's a lot of small towns disconnected from the rest of the country there still.

    By Blogger Barry, at 1:00 PM  

  • This is pretty funny to see. I'm from Beulaville, but live in Durham now.

    By Blogger Stockard Channing, at 6:38 PM  

  • That's about 30 miles from where I went to high school. Trailer parks and individual ones are thick as thieves down there.

    By Blogger Joseph H., at 10:21 PM  

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