Wednesday, January 18, 2017

You're Never Too Old to Learn Something New

In my twenties, I photographed the same things I do today -- natural environments, flora and fauna, weathered wood, chipped paint, abandoned buildings.

Only now that I have joined 500px, I have learned that what I've been especially obsessed lately is called "urbex." Here's what Wikipedia has to say about it:

"Urban exploration (often shorted as urbex or UE, and sometimes know as 'roof-and-tunnel hacking') is the exploration of man-made structures, usually abandoned ruins or not usually seen components of the man-made environment. Photography and historical interest/documentation are heavily featured in the hobby and, although it may sometimes involve trespassing onto private property, this is not always the case."

Currently, I have been stalking two blocks of Decherd, just down the mountain. At times in the distant past, the town boomed, thanks in part to the railroad. Boo tells me that in the old days ( she's in her nineties), folks from atop the mountain had to go down to Decherd to get a train. The tracks are still there, but the boom moved to four-lane highways. One runs from the interstate to the northeast through Decherd to points west; along this corridor, Nissan has built a huge manufacturing plant. The other runs across and down the mountain, into the valley, and through Decherd to Nashville; along it are big box stores -- Walmart, Home Dept, Chinese restaurants, the Co-op, among others.

I used to drive a Nissan and I often frequent some of these highway establishments, but none operate out of buildings as beautiful as what continues to crumble on the old main street.

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