« on: November 08, 2009, 04:59:58 am »
I don't live in my City anymore, but I still haven't left. I'm about an hour's drive away, in the capitol. Sometimes, I go back down to visit relatives.
I wouldn't call it a city. Not sure I'd call it a town, even. Not anymore. This place, you see, it used to run on lumber mills. Everybody had a father or an uncle who worked at the mill, so they got an easy summer job, but the job soon became more important than school, so they dropped out to work full-time. Who needs an education when you can get thirty bucks an hour for raw physical labour? This place, people loved the mills. Except I wouldn't call it love. Call it an addiction. Sure, the mills had their side effects. There was the cancer, for one thing. Turns out the chemicals in the steam that came out of those plants every day were some mighty strong shit. And this place, back in its heyday, you couldn't see for twenty feet with all the steam.
Then there was the boredom. Everyone works at the mill, there's very few people left to run anything else but the grocery stores and the bars and the cinema with the week-late releases. Everyone lives way out in the woods anyway, so there's nothing to do but smoke and drink and fuck and shoot up. If there's one thing that's thriving in this place, it's the drugs. You can't get away from them, no matter where you go.
Anyway, the mills are all gone now. All closed down. Too much of an environmental hazard, too much of a health hazard. Too much of a liability to those big companies in this dead-end town. Doesn't matter why they're gone. All that matters is their glorious legacy. You want history? You got it. The lumber mills are gone now, and we've got so much to show for their golden age. So many tumours, so many used needles. So many kids with no futures wasting their time milling around the schools or beating each other up in the town's one bar. So many big cottages up in the woods, rotting and empty now because Dad got laid off and couldn't make the next payment and had to sell the boat and the truck and the four-wheeler. So many rotten dreams, so many used condoms clogging up the river. This place is so empty now that it's spooky. There's a reason they call it a ghost town. See, everyone's gone out west to the oil-sands in the prairies. Drop a neutron bomb on this place, nobody would notice.
But despite it all, I love it, and I can't wait to go back again.