Sunday, November 28, 2010

Abandoned City

After we roam around the state looking for abandoned places in the desert, we will be in search of abandoned places in various cities.  Look for future posts of our antics in Phoenix, Tucson, Prescott, and Flagstaff.  It should be fun.....

Friday, November 26, 2010

The Sugar Beet Factory

In the 1900, sugar beets were a profitable product in many states around the country. One person who took note of this was businessman W. J. Murphy, who was the founder of the Arizona Improvement Company for water and land development. Glendale was one of the many growing agricultural communities connected to a canal and irrigation system, which makes it a great location for a sugar beet factory.

Since the early 1880’s, sugar beet factories were built in many states with the desire of changing sugar beets into granulated sugar. Murphy pushed for a large factory to be built in Glendale after successful experiments proved that sugar beets can be manufactured in the Salt River Valley.

In the summer of 1903, construction began on the Sugar Beet Factory just on mile east of Glendale’s business district. But by December, construction had to be temporarily stopped because of financial woes leaving only the steel frame standing. By 1906 with construction resuming, the huge factory was completed by the end of July. The main building was five stories high in one area and three stories in the rest. It was surrounded by a boiler house, a lime kiln house, a repair shop, and a 165 foot smoke stack with a 30 by 30 foot base. Also on the land were a sugar warehouse, beet sheds, and an office building. With all the machinery in place, and all the beets in the sheds, the factory was ready to go. On August 11, 1906, with many residences watching with excitement, the switch was thrown, and operations had begun. The first bags of sugar that came off the line were rich in color and very high grade.

Throughout the years the sugar beet factory went through many changes. It had few different owners, was referred to by different names, sustained weather damages, and lost its smokestack after being hit by lightning in 1951. In 1985 the factory closed its doors for good. Today the building is just a shell of what it once was.  It is abandoned with the spirits of the workers still roaming its deteriorating walls.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Asthma Attack and the Dream

By April

This incident happened when I was 16 years old, and was the second time I had a serious asthma attack in 5 months. The previous time resulted in cardiac arrest and a hospital stay for 7 days.

It was a Saturday morning and I woke up early to do my chores. I began with the kitchen. I took the floor mat by the door and began to shake it off outside. It sent up a huge cloud of dust into my face. (Yeah, smart huh?) This set off an asthma attack. My sister was next to me and she saw what happened. I told her to get my inhaler for me. Realizing it was getting bad fast, I stopped her and told her to set up my breathing treatment. She ran into my room and I followed her. My chest was tightening up and I knew it wasn't good. I started to panic and I told my sister to get mom and to tell her we have to go to the hospital. I could barely talk. My mom took me out to the car and we left my sister at the house to call my family. I remember not being able to breathe at all in the car. I was trying to sit up straight and I was pushing onto the dashboard stretching my lungs trying to get some air in. I remember that my mom was crying and she was very scared. I remember at one point telling her that I was going to die. I don't know why (or even how) I said that, but I did and I won’t ever forget the look on her face when I said it.

We lived about a 2 blocks from the hospital, (strategic planning by my mom), so when we pulled up to the ER it had only been a few minutes. When my mom pulled up to the entrance, I just opened the car door and sort of fell out. At this point things started to get fuzzy. I remember doing all of this, but I have no memory of sound or why I was doing the things I was doing. I was told later that it was the lack of oxygen. I walked in the door and I leaned up against a little wall that came up to my waist. There were people sitting on the other side waiting to be seen. There was an old woman sitting there and I started to grab at her and pull at her hair. The next thing I knew, there was a wheelchair being shoved under me. I noticed my mom next to me and she looked very scared. They wheeled me in and that is the last thing I remember. The doctors & family filled me in on what happened next. I guess I became extremely combative right away. It was a lot worse than any of my previous attacks, because I hadn't been breathing for about 5 minutes when I got in. They couldn't restrain me. It took seven doctors to hold me down before they could tie my hands and feet down. Before they could I pulled out an IV & kicked a doctor in the face (giving him 7 stitches). I guess I tried to pull out the breathing tube but they stopped me. Once again, my heart started to fibrillate and they had to use the Defibrillator to shock my heart into a normal rhythm and it worked.

They let mom in to see me. The doctors told her that I was very unstable and that there is a possibility that I still may not pull out of this. She told me later that she came in knowing that it may be the last time she could see me. I didn't wake up until the next afternoon.

I had the weirdest dream right before I woke up, and although I don’t remember much of it, it felt like it had an importance to it that I did not recognized until years later. I spoke about this dream, just after it happened, as being a product of the medication I was given due to the oddness of the dream at the end, but I could never shake the feeling it gave me. It gradually became apparent to me that it was more than just a dream. When I talked or even thought about the man in my dream, I tear up and I just know. He was the dream, he was why I was there and he was important. He had a presence of power, the kind that gives the wave of goose bumps and nod of truth. I have written down just the tangible bit I remember, I wish I remember more. I hope I can convey it to you as I know it myself. It is what it is and it was real.

I only remember the dream part of the way through. I don’t know what happened that lead up to this point, but I wish I did.

I was in this very large empty room and it was brightly lit with this cream colored light. I was sitting in a wooden chair along with a man who was also in the room with me. I felt very comfortable and content, we had been talking and I knew what we were talking about was very important. I don’t remember this man’s face, but he and I seemed to know each other. I felt like I could confide in him. I remember very distinctly that he was sitting far from me, about 30 feet away, which only struck me as odd when I woke up later. We had been talking in our normal voices as if we were next to each other and the feeling of the conversation was that we just had a serious talk or that something important had just happened. The heaviness in the dream had begun to lift and that was pretty much where this dream began to be more solid for me. It was as if I was coming out of a dream within a dream. All the seriousness and intensity of the dream began to fade, and he seemed to be getting further and further away from me. I know we had been discussing something about my breathing because I was shifting into another topic on how odd it was that I didn’t have to try to breath anymore. I told him how weird I thought this was and how it didn’t make any sense. I told him that I knew if I held my breath, I would still breathe. And I remember saying “watch this, I’ll show you” and I held my breath & after about 3 seconds, I breathed. I remember saying “Did you see that? This is so weird!” I found this very amusing in a childlike way, I don’t remember him responding and that didn’t seem to bother me, as I was extremely excited and distracted by this discovery. As this was happening, he seemed to be getting even further away and is was as if he was never there. I don’t remember anything after that, only that I was coming out of the drug induced coma with the dream fresh in my mind. I was still on the ventilator when I woke up.

I tried to talk and I couldn't, and the tube hurt. It felt like a broomstick was shoved down my throat. It started to gag me and I began to get sick again so nurse came in and pulled the tube out really fast so I wouldn't choke. I was still tied down, both my hands and feet. I had pulled out an IV, so I had blood all over my arm and hand. That freaked me out. That's when everyone filled me in on what had happened. I was in the hospital for 11 days and got out just in time to go to prom (I was a sophomore in high school, but was asked by a junior to go). The doctors let me go on the condition that I took it easy, which I did. I was told by the doctors that it was a miracle that I survived without any brain damage. Another nurse, who was there when I came in 5 months earlier, came in to talk to me when I was in recovery. He sat in the chair next to me, picked up my hand and said when he saw me come in the ER again, his heart dropped. He said I was in such bad shape, he didn’t think I wasn’t going to make it. He told me this with tears in his eyes. He told me to take care of myself and that I truly was given a second chance at life.

Monday, November 22, 2010

My Guest Blogger: April

I am very excited to introduce my guest blogger, April. April will be sharing her real life paranormal experiences and bizarre dreams on my blog. Last year I posted eight stories of paranormal events that happened to her. (I will link each post at the end.) April and I have been corresponding back and forth on facebook about those accounts and the many other weird stories and dreams she has experienced. She has written some of them down on paper and I asked if I could share them on my blog. She agreed and emailed me some of the stories already written. She was curious to find out if there were others that share the same occurrences.

I have known April since she was in elementary school and began hanging out with my daughter. They became close friends and soon April was joining us on camping and fishing trips. She would often spend the night and tell my kids some of her paranormal stories. There were a few times that my son would come out to the living room where I was watching TV and join me. He was scared because as he would put it, “April is telling her stories again and I got scared”. Another thing I remember when April was younger is that she loved watching “The X-files” and never missed an episode.

April’s first remembered experience was at the age of 4 years. (I titled the story, “The Orange Ball”.) Another story (I titled “After the Ouija Board…”) is about several experiences April had after using an Ouija Board. April’s Mother once told her that when using an Ouija board, you must ground your energy and shield, just like hooking up to a surge protector. Her Mother claimed that they came from a long line of psychics, ghost magnets and seers, but April doesn't agree. Instead she didn’t listen and had many strange experiences after using an Ouija board, but has since stopped using one.

April hasn’t had any problems with metals but with electronics, especially phones. They tend to act in an unusual manner whenever she is around. She also says that she has a tendency of “weird” follow her wherever she is at. At work she has the most computer issues and seems to get most of the weird cases. Along with the weird are the many paranormal experiences she has had. She has heard disembodied voices, seen things move, strange lights, and shadow figures. These strange occurrences are still happening to her today.

April doesn’t see dead people, but seems to have times of extra ordinary coincidences and a feeling that accompanies them. This feeling might last a few days or even weeks. During that time, she feels like she is in a dream state or auto pilot as she describes it, but can still function with the everyday things she has to do.

April works a full-time job as a fraud and risk analyst for a large company. She is an amazing artist and gets a kick out of finding funny videos on YouTube of people and animals. She is always laughing, especially at herself and tells funny stories of her past. She has always had a fascination with weather and loves watching the show “Storm Chasers”. (I thought she would be one herself.) She loves to read mysteries, nonfiction, and is a fan of Stephen King and the discovery channel. She is newly married with hopes of starting a family soon but for now her terrier mix, which she rescued, is her baby. She is a severe asthmatic and has gone into cardiac arrest on multiple occasions. (She has a story about one of her experiences which happen in the hospital before she woke up for a future post.)

That is a little bit of information on April. Look for her to do some guest posts on my blog.  Here are a couple of self portraits drawn by April:

Here are the posts I did on some of April's bizarre experiences with the paranormal:
The Orange Ball
Bloody Mary
The Wite-Out
Cottage 4: Mummified Body in Bathtub
The Dried Roses
Unseen Intruder
After the Ouija Board: The Visitor
After the Ouija Board: The Mysterious Call

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bigfoot, the Horned Toad and Misc

Here are some miscellaneous pictures from our Casa Grande trip.

Sharon relaxing at the dump with her newest family addition "Junkyard Annie".

Vinnie and Sharon walking across the wash to get to the abandoned rec center.

Sharon's car...

A one-legged Bigfoot in the Casa Grande desert?

Vinnie and the weird rock.

Halloween costume?  Looks like someone was a zombie.....muhahaha!

The flying saucer building at the Domes.

Vinnie getting beamed up by Scottie. 

The party tunnel at the Domes.

Vinnie checking out hell.

...and here it is, hell.

The horned toad we found. (Actually Vins found it.)

Messing with the horned toad and trying to turn it over.
 The smart little creature wasn't going to let that happen.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mother Nature's Fury on the Domes

Since we had a guest traveler with us, Vinnie, Sharon thought he might want to see the Domes in person.  Even though they say there are "No Trespassing" signs posted, we did not see them.  We were just there to take pictures and admire the uniqueness of the structures. Unlike the vagrants and party peeps, we were not out to destroy the place.  Besides, Mother Nature has done a good job of it all by herself.

It had only been a month since Sharon and I visited the Domes, but within that time the cruel and harsh weather that went through our state played havoc on the Dome's structures.  The walls and ceilings of each building had more holes especially the last building.  There were huge chunks of the ceiling lying on the floor where there was none before.  The walls that had various cracks where the sunshine poured in, and there were now holes that we could walk right through.  We don't think that last structure is going to last much longer especially after another one of Mother Nature's wild storms passes through.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Beast, Box and Warehouse

Right after catching a quick lunch in Casa Grande, we headed back towards the place where the abandoned shop was located.  Another large building caught our eyes and it looked deserted.  Yahoo, another place to sneak into.  Even though we didn't see any "No Trespassing" signs, we knew that the locals wouldn't want us in there, but we didn't care.  We walked towards the large warehouse building which had other structures around it, and noticed all the windows broken and graffiti on the walls.  On the inside near the entrance is a line of what looked like it used to be electrical boxes.  We didn't know who the "Beast" was, but he put his name on almost every wall.  It definitely looked like a recent Halloween party was there because of the costumes and party favors we found.  There were a couple of cages and a jack-in-the-box looking object in the middle of the place.  We could only imagine what kind of wild party the attendees had, eeehaw!  This huge warehouse became our last abandoned site Sharon got a reading at but wasn't the end of the places we visited on our trip...