It ain't pretty being easy... (soopageek) wrote,
It ain't pretty being easy...
soopageek

My adventure in Goldfield: Part 2

As I mentioned in part one of this adventure, the main attraction in Goldfield is is the old Goldfield Hotel.



I also mentioned that it was considered to be the finest hotel between Denver and the California coast whenit was built in 1908.  Celebrities and politicians were known to frequent the hotel.  President Teddy Roosevelt gave a speech from one of the wrought-iron balconies.  Wyatt Earp supposedly worked at the hotel after the gunfight at the OK Corral. It is certainly a fantastic, old building.  Supposedly, it has been built over an old mine.



It apprently has many ghost stories attached to it, as well.  Among them are gruesome tales of suicide and shootings by patrons but the most fantastic story goes that the owner of the Hotel had a long running affair with one of the town prostitues who became pregnant with his child.  For fear of what it would do to his reputation he chained the woman to a radiator in room 209 until she bore the child.  Some accounts claim she died during child-birth, other say he murdered her.  The end of the story though is always the same.  He threw the infant into a shaft opening of the mine beneath the hotel, so supposedly there is an infant spirit which haunts the premises.

The front steps, with its brick columns are littered with debris, however, and the windows have grown dull with the build-up of dust and dirt.



It was tightly locked-up, so no entrance was possible.  There was, however, a notice stating that it was in the possession of Esmerelda County and was for sale, with a listing price of $364,000.  It went on to say that inquiries should be made at the clerk's office.  I walked back up to the courthouse and inquired about gaining access to the hotel.  I figured I couldn't pass myself off as a man with over $350,000 to squander on an old hotel in a ghost town, so I positioned myself as a photographer with my fancy camera in hand.  I found out that the Hotel had been purchased already by a lawyer from Carson City by the name of Red Roberts.  I was also informed that he was supposed to begin some remodeling work on the Hotel in April or May.  I obtained Mr. Roberts' address from the clerk.  I intend to write him and see if I might arrange to meet him there one weekend when he's there.  I don't have much to offer, I suppose except maybe allowing him to use any photos I take.  I could invision someone wanting to display photos of such a historic place on the premises after a major renovation.  I figure it can't hurt to ask.

A tad dejected but still hopeful as my mind raced with these possibilities, I walked back down to the Hotel.  I discovered two things upon my return: 1) that I could get some fairly decent shots of the interior through the dusty windows and 2) there were some interesting inhabitants on the premises of the Goldfield Hotel.

I found that if I brushed the dust from the glass with my hand and placed the lens directly against the glass to alleivate any sunlight glare, I could actually take some halfway decent photos of the ground floor.  I made my first attempt with a color photo of the staircase and the old Hotel safe in the wall.



As you can see it came out a bit blurry, so decided to switch to black and white for the remainder of shots, which yielded much more appealing photos I think.  The next shot is of the front desk, slightly to the left of the first photo, as evidenced by the staircase which can be seen to the far right.



I then moved around the corner, further to the left.  A long room which nearly occupied the length of the northern side was in view, most likely a restaurant or ballroom since it had its own entrance seperate from the main lobby.





Further down still, I took another shot of this room, which included an old baby-grand piano.



My pal mandy_moon is fond of making clones out of newspaper and duct tape.  She first made a clone of herself then made a clone-boyfriend.  She recently lost her clones in a rather nasty and vile manner.  I thought it might warm her heart to know that all the way on the otherside of the country is an entire FAMILY OF CLONES... WITH THEIR PETS... AND STRANGE CLONE MACHINERY.

The backlot of the Hotel is fenced-in.  As you're walking along the fence, you notice something kind of... odd.  There is a recess built into the side of the fence.  The recess is constructed out of old, spring-style mattress frames creating a small foyer.  Atop this foyer rests a surfboard and perched on the surfboard is what appears to be a small family of one-eyed, cloned ducks.



Out of curiosity, I pressed against the center frame and it swung on a hinge into the lot.  It was a portal into a magical world of clones!  I was greeted by this guy.



I took the above photo with the telephoto lens, because at his feetstumps was his pet snake.  So I was a little hesitant about getting too close at first.  I was expecting one of those famed, southwestern rattlensakes, but upon closer inspection, I deduced it must've been a domesticated snake that had been transplanted here from Wisconsin.  I could tell by its markings.



He was working on a machine of his, but since he didn't have a head, he couldn't hear me asking him what the machine was actually for.  Of course, this is silly, without a head, he couldn't have given me a response either.  But he didn't seem to mind me looking at his contraption, although come to think of it, without a head, he probably had no idea I was there.  So I took lots of photos of him and his machine.  First of all, I took a really close-up shot of his torso so you could see his construction.  His master had fashioned him from strips of aluminum culled from beverage cans.  The strips were then woven together to make his torso, legs, and arms.



His machine was a sight to behold.  It looked like some weird-ass rickshaw.  The handles on the front were made of wood, but wrapped in more aluminum can strips.  The tips of the handles had glass coverings, which looks as if they might have come from old telegraph poles.



The body of the rickshaw contained some odd machine consisting of gears, pulleys, bicycle wheels, and various conduits.



The canopy of the rickshaw was made of the mesh webbing used in those mattress frames.  It had been rolled into a circle to make something akin to a cage and suspended on metal rods.  Attached to it was a piece of plastic tubing, a bathroom plunger, and couple more of those glass knobs.



Topping the whole shebang was a dilpidated, red birdhouse.



When viewed as a whole, it was a rather impressive sight.



I said goodbye (in vain) to the clone mechanic and began to wander around clone land a little.  There were remnants of other clone-machinery strewn about.  Most of it made no sense to my sexually-reproduced mental faculties, but I found a small pile that appeared to be a clone hourglass and a clone vacuum cleaner.



Then I stumbled on another inhabitant of clone-world.  He had a pet snake, too.  The clones in Nevada must really like snakes! This guy seemed to be a bit more advanced than the other guy.  For one he had feet and hands.  He also had a mouth....    well, sorta. 



While it's comforting to know that clones have the same human frailties as the rest of us, it's still sad to see a clone driven to drink so bad he needs a funnel.  Or maybe he was just the resident Party Clone-dude; the clone who shows up at all the clone parties with the funnel and the beer.  Again, there were some rather serious communication barriers with this clone for obvious reasons, so it's really not my place to judge.

For those of you with keen perception, you probably already guessed what's behind him.  It may just be the world's biggest cheeseburger.  I think it's safe to say that it was the biggest cheeseburger in Goldfield Clone World at any rate.  I'm not sure if he was guarding it, or had just finished making it and had popped open a cold brewski to celebrate the achievement... again that whole "no head thing" prohibited me from finding-out.



I encountered one other clone on my visit to Clone World, one I didn't get too close-to out of fear and respect.  I suspect he may have been their leader or something.  He was HUGE.  He stood at the other end of the lot all by himself.  He only had one leg, yet he was still an intimidating presence.  For reference, consider that the tall structure beside him is a three-story elevator shaft that is to be part of the hotel restoration.  I wish I hadn't been so intimidated and bashful.  As you can clearly see in the photo, he actually has a HEAD.



I bet I could've had all of my Clone World questions answered if I'd only had the nerve.
Tags: photo, travel
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