About a Ghost Town Bike Tour


By Celeste
PO Box 226
Irvine, Alberta
T0J 1V0
ofcourseyoucan.tumblr.com

I love exploring abandoned buildings, though I really don't get many opportunities to do so. I did recently get to check out a weird fake building that is actually a train tunnel ventilation shaft, and that was pretty cool even if the building itself wasn't that interesting.

This zine is primarily photos of abandoned buildings that Celeste discovered while cycling through (I think) rural Manitoba. The black and white photos accurately capture specific moments of the decay of these buildings: rotting staircases, collapsed roofs, debris, remnants, and general signs of nature returning to where humans had "conquered".

Each photo has some typewritten text placed over it. Some of these pieces describe (in a rather poetic manner) the buildings the photos were taken in, and what was found inside them ("honeycombs, the hard work of bees, smashed."). While others just talk about the idea of ghost towns in general, and how civilization can change and move and retreat from where it once was. They also explain some of the various reasons why a rural community might wither and die after being successful.

The text describes the few encounters with actual people that happened on this trip, and how these encounters describe "what a town is like just before it becomes a ghost town". Or, in one case, how a family that doesn't speak English (but rather "something like german") gets annoyed when you visit the cemetery where their goats are grazing.

I liked this zine and its descriptions of crumbling buildings and towns, though I think you can find the same decay and abandonment in cities as well as rural areas. Despite the continued existence of certain buildings throughout human history, we seem to forsake things far more frequently than not.

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