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Report - Amehrica

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by dsankt, Aug 7, 2011.

  1. dsankt

    dsankt si ce que tu dis est vrai
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    A small compilation of my last pass through the US.

    Firstly, a starter of what happened in nyc:

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    The Hell Gate. A name alone which conjours powerful images and sentiments suited to a monolith of stone and red steel. Originally the name, a corruption of the dutch phrase Hellegat or hell's hole, referred to the treacherous East River which claimed hundreds of ships before military blasting cleared the way in the 1880s using 300,000+ lbs of explosives. Over this piece of water a bridge opened in 1916 which naturally took on the same name. So well constructed was the bridge that the last piece fitted into place required little more than 1cm of adjustment to fit. An article published in 2005 claimed the Hell Gate would survive at least 1000 years if we all vanished tomorrow. If you're ever motivated enough to see it in person you'll believe it.

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    The Hell Gate is quite similar to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, in fact inspiring its design, so given some limited familiarity with the subject matter it was natural to check the enormous stone pylons for possible access since that always looked quite doable before SHB went into Terminator security mode. Alas, as our hosts had already said, the viaduct is the key.

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    Much like our adventures with the Forth Bridge, Hell Gate is a rail only bridge and provides little coverage for those inclined to getting up close and personal. Railway personal naturally have no need to secret themselves from the passing stock. Late at night the trains are infrequent though and it's quiet enough to hear them coming so we took virtual free roam of the place. Standing on the deck below the castle like pillars is far more imposing than it is from the grassy field below. A few late trains came and went while we went about relaxing, taking photos and perhaps most amusingly of all, letting Shane get on with shooting nudes of a model friend who he'd roped into the adventure. To her credit she took it all in stride, faltering not a step of the way and still managing to look good reclined naked against the red painted steel. That's more than I can say for any of us.

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    It occured to me standing with Snappel atop the apex of the arch near the glaring red channel marker that being on the road again wasn't so bad after all, that each step away was a step closer if you're taking the long road back.

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    Eagle River
    South of NYC we met with an old friend of mine, Yaggy, and went to have a peek at his baby - the incredible Eagle River powerplant. All shot on a Broncia SQ-AI 6x6 medium format camera.

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    Freedom Tunnel
    I don't feel much need to cover the details of the Freedom Tunnel since I've done so before and snappel has written about our trip there already and further, the removal of the graffiti which coated the tunnel.

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    One small excerpt:
    From above could be heard the sounds of people in the park, the distant mumur broken suddenly by a young child's voice descending into the tunnel: "Mmomm! Mom! I can see two tracks!". The mother humoured her son, who continued his observations:

    "Mom! There's a bike down there!"
    "Really? Down in the tunnel?"
    "Yes!! Look! How did it get down there Mom?!"
    "Maybe someone lives down there?"
    "You think so?"
    "Why don't you shout down and see if anyone replies?"

    By now I was trying not to laugh, just out of view in the shadows. And then the boy shouted down as loudly as he could: "Is anyone down there??!". I was in stitches and looked at dsankt who was nearly doubled-up - what should we say? Then ds composed himself, mustered the most gravelly creepy voice he could and boomed: "Ye-esssssss...."

    All was silent. Mother no doubt in more surprise than her boy, himself probably to remember the time the voices in the tunnel spoke to him for as long as he lives. About half a minute later he called down again, but not wanting to spoil the illusion the pair of us crept around the edge of the sunlit ballast and silently continued along the tunnel.

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