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Report - A City in Ruins: Willcox, Arizona, USA (Feb 2015)

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by Jim Sullivan, Dec 20, 2015.

  1. Jim Sullivan

    Jim Sullivan 28DL Full Member
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    I originally meant to drive through Willcox on my way to New Mexico and maybe stop for a few quick photos. But after I realized how many abandoned buildings there were, I ended up spending half the day there. It was such a great unexpected exploration.
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    I snapped a few pictures of the senior apartments pictured above, and was about to leave when a man in a motorized wheelchair appeared out of nowhere. Thin and frail with graying skin, he spoke through an electrolarynx, which gave his voice a frightening mechanized quality that startled me when I first heard it.

    "What are you doing?” he demanded.

    I explained that I thought the place was abandoned and was just taking pictures.

    He said he’s the only one that still lives there. I am not sure why he volunteered that information. I apologized very sincerely and felt awful to see someone living in such conditions. I got out of there in a hurry.

    Later he sped past me on the sidewalk, but didn’t acknowledge me. Two American flags mounted on the back of his wheelchair waved in the breeze.
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    At one point I was approached by a cop who said someone had reported me as looking potentially suspicious. At first I assumed it was the guy at the senior apartments, but it had actually been a postal worker who had watched from across the street while I photographed the Chevrolet Dealer.

    I told the cop I didn’t mean to cause any trouble and would stop taking pics if he wanted (I’d already taken SO many, it wouldn’t have been a problem). He said something to the effect of: "There's nothing wrong with what you're doing. It’s not like we’re in a military base. Pictures are fine." I thought that was really cool of him. He seemed surprised that someone would consider me a suspicious character. I feel like he made his mind up when he saw me and realized I wasn’t a crackhead looking for copper to pillage.

    It was the first time a cop was polite and respectful and didn't approach me as if I were a criminal, a stark contrast from the way other police officers in Arizona had spoken to me. For once, I didn't feel compelled to flee the area after being stopped. I appreciated it more than I can say.

    I was in a good mood after talking to the cop, I decided to stick around Willcox for a little while and do what I could to support the local economy. I went to Railroad Avenue, a cute little area that was once the business center of town and is now in the midst of revitalization. A strip of stores and bars operate out of historic buildings centered around a railroad crossing.

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    girtrood, ThisWay, JaneEyre and 4 others like this.

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  2. urblex

    urblex 28DL Maverick
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    Interesting stuff mate! Pretty weird about the old wheelchair guy who said he still lives there (he could of been lying), should of tried to get some history out of him... Thanks for posting.
     
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  3. Bolts

    Bolts 28DL Regular User
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  4. Nickindroy

    Nickindroy A Porky Prime Cut
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    Again?
     
  5. Bolts

    Bolts 28DL Regular User
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    @Nickindroy seen this before, this is a 'new' report. Looks like the previous one was deleted...
     
  6. Nickindroy

    Nickindroy A Porky Prime Cut
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    I know, odd.
     
  7. Oxygen Thief

    Oxygen Thief Admin
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    What's the last picture of?
     
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  8. urblex

    urblex 28DL Maverick
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    The village idiot's house? Haha
    Something's been scratched onto the back of the door, can't make any sense of it though. Was thinking it could be some sort of Police box type thing (like Dr Who's magical box thing) but it looks too small.
     
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  9. Jim Sullivan

    Jim Sullivan 28DL Full Member
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    It's an old phone booth, exclusively used for railroad personnel.
     
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  10. Bugsuperstar

    Bugsuperstar Irresponsible & Reckless
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    Interesting place mate.
     
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  11. Jim Sullivan

    Jim Sullivan 28DL Full Member
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    Thank you!
     
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