Some of you may have heard that the Disney corporation is responsible for at least one real, “live” Ghost Town.
Disney built the “Treasure Island” resort in Baker’s Bay in the Bahamas. It didn’t START as a ghost town! Disney’s cruise ships would actually stop at the resort and leave tourists there to relax in luxury.
This is a FACT. Look it up.
Disney blew $30,000,000 on the place… yes, Thirty Million Dollars.
Then they abandoned it.
Disney blamed the shallow waters (too shallow for their ships to safely operate) and there was even blame cast on the workers, saying that since they were from the Bahamas, they were too lazy to work a regular schedule.
That’s where the factual nature of their story ends. It wasn’t because of sand, and it obviously wasn’t because “foreigners are lazy”. Both are convenient excuses.
No, I sincerely doubt those reasons were legitimate. Why don’t I buy the official story?
Because of Mowgli’s Palace.
Near the beachside city of Emerald Isle in North Carolina, Disney began construction of “Mowgli’s Palace” in the late 1990s. The concept was a Jungle-themed resort with a large, you guessed it, PALACE in the center of the whole thing.
If you’re unfamiliar with the character of Mowgli, then you might better remember the story “The Jungle Book”. If you haven’t seen it anywhere else, you’d know it as the Disney cartoon from decades past.
Mowgli is an abandoned child, in the jungle, essentially raised by animals and simultaneously threatened/pursued by other animals.
Mowgli’s Palace was a controversial undertaking from the start. Disney bought up a ton of high-priced land for the project, and there was actually a scandal surrounding some of the purchases. The local Government claimed “eminent domain” on people’s homes, then turned around and sold the properties to Disney. At one point a home that had just been constructed was immediately condemned with little to no explanation.
The land grabbed by the Government was supposedly for some fictional highway project. Knowing full well what was going on, people started calling it “Mickey Mouse Highway”.
Then there was the concept art. A group of stuffed shirts from Disney Co. actually held a city meeting. They intended to sell everyone on how lucrative this project was going to be for everyone. When they showed the concept art, this gigantic Indian Palace… surrounded by JUNGLE… staffed with men and women in loincloths and tribal gear… well, suffice to say everyone flipped their shit.
We’re talking about a large Indian Palace, Jungle, and Loincloths not only in the center of a relatively wealth area, but also a somewhat “xenophobic” area of the southern USA. It was a questionable mix at that point in history.
One member of the crowd tried to storm the stage, but he was quickly subdued by security after he managed to break one of the presentation boards over his knee.
What the literal fuck?
I have nightmares where I’m trapped in a shower. The drain is plugged, and the the water won’t stop pouring down on me. Water rises to my ankles, to my waist, and then over my head. The shower curtain turns to glass, and my screams turn to gargles. A dark figure presses its face against the glass on the other side, and it watches me. I plead, but it won’t let me out. I swallow water and flail helplessly in my glass coffin.
I wake up gagging.
I know where the nightmare came from - I never have to dig deep. The incident is never far from my subconscious. Finding it is easy.
Getting over it is not.
It was the summer of my 12th birthday when the Hudsons moved in across the street. Three people, one of them a really old woman. She was tiny, frail, skeletal almost. Thin white hair, faded, blue flowery dress - her head hung from her neck and it wobbled as the man pushed her up a makeshift wheelchair ramp into the house. At the time I couldn’t figure out if she was alive or dead.
A few minutes later she appeared in an upstairs window, sitting in her wheelchair. She was directly facing my bedroom, and I cautiously peered out from behind my curtains. Her head was upright now, and she stared at me. Just stared, without moving her head an inch.
I closed my drapes.
For days she sat at the window. She watched the cars putter down our suburban road and gazed at the neighborhood kids scurrying through their yards. I never saw anyone else in the room; never saw her move from that wheelchair. At night I’d nervously peek through the crack in my drapes. Her silhouette was still in that window, lights off, staring out into the darkness at my bedroom. I couldn’t tell, but I knew she was watching me.
The stories about her cropped up pretty quick amongst my friends in the neighborhood. That she was a witch. That she was just a doll. That she was actually dead. But I knew she wasn’t dead. Sure, I never saw her move from that window, not once. And I never saw her head turn. But I felt her eyes move as they studied me. I could feel her watching me. All alone in my bedroom, in the middle of the night with my drapes firmly shut, I’d wake up and shudder. Her eyes were on me, I just knew it.
I began sleeping on the floor. The lower I was, the better. Maybe she couldn’t see me if I was on the floor.
I told my parents that the old woman across the street was creeping me out. I pleaded with them to talk to the Hudsons and ask them to move her to a room without a window. They laughed and told me to let her live out her twilight years in peace. She was just watching the street, they said, and that probably made her feel happy and feel younger.
“Are you just going to stick me in a windowless room when I’m an old lady?” my mom laughed. “Remind me to move in with your sister when I’m in a wheelchair!”
A week later there was some commotion at the Hudsons. I watched from my bedroom window as the man ran out of the house and opened up the double-doors of his van. He jogged inside, and he reappeared minutes later pushing the old woman in her wheelchair down the ramp. She looked frailer than before. She couldn’t have weighed more than 70 pounds. Her head was flung to the side, resting on her right shoulder. Her body jostled in the wheelchair.
But her eyes never left me. Watched me the whole time.
The man picked her up and placed her in the car. He folded the wheelchair and stuffed it in the trunk. He quickly hopped into the driver’s seat, the younger woman pounced into the passenger seat, and the man put his foot to the pedal.
The old woman’s limp head still faced me. It bobbed up and down as the van reversed down the driveway. I studied her face. It was expressionless, emotionless. Her tongue slightly hung from the right-side of her mouth. But her eyes were on mine, and they stayed on me.
The van accelerated down the street, and it was gone.
My parents heard the news that afternoon from other neighbors: the old woman’s condition was getting worse, and the Hudsons had taken her to some sort of a home. She wouldn’t be coming back. I went straight to my bedroom, and I looked across the street. I smiled. Her window was finally empty.
The Hudsons didn’t come back the next day. No van. That night I looked out towards the old woman’s window. There was no one there, no wheelchair. But the bedroom light was on. I remember telling my dad I thought it was strange, and he just shrugged and said, “Must be on some sort of timer or something.”
I woke up in the middle of the night and nervously peered out my bedroom window. That bedroom light was still on. It suddenly flicked off, and I ducked below my window frame. I slowly rose and looked out, expecting to see the silhouette of that tiny, skeletal being. I watched for ten minutes, pinching and straining my eyes. The lights quickly flickered on and then off again.
I slept on the floor again, clutching my pillow close.
I had a late baseball practice the next evening. When I got home, my house was empty. My parents were at my little sister’s softball game. I headed to the shower to rinse off.
just a few of the many reasons why I’m excited for when the tumblr generation becomes parents
The bonding with baby one cracked me up.
NO “TELEPHONES”. TALK TO EACH OTHER. FACE TO FACE ONLY. WRITE A LETTER. SEND A TELEGRAM TO YOUR MOM. PRETEND IT’S 1860. LIVE.
NO ‘WRITING’… TALK TO EACH OTHER. THROW A ROCK AT YOUR MOM. PRETEND IT’S 10,000 BCE. LIVE.
URGGA. ROU GRAAURH. RUH.
<SMACKS HANDS ON WALL WITH PAINT.>
NO ‘HIGHER BRAIN FUNCTIONS’ …USE YOUR REPTILIAN BRAIN
EAT YOUR MOM’S CORPSE SHE DIED TO PROVIDE YOU WITH SUSTENANCE
PRETEND YOU HAVE JUST AROSE FROM THE SEA
NO “MULTICELLULAR TRAITS”….. USE YOUR SYMBIOTIC MITOCHONDRIA
REPRODUCE ASEXUALLY, YOU’RE YOUR OWN PARENT
PRETEND IT’S 2BYA
NO “LIFE.” USE FUNDAMENTAL PHYSICAL FORCES TO FORM SPHERICAL OBJECTS REVOLVING AROUND ONE ANOTHER IN SPACE.
FUSE HYDROGEN INTO HELIUM USING GRAVITATIONAL PRESSURE TO PRODUCE HEAT AND LIGHT.
PRETEND IT’S 4.5BYA.
STABILIZE INTO EQUILIBRIA
NO “MATTER”. EXIST IN THE VOID WITHOUT PURPOSE OR MEANING.
THERE IS NO “YOU”, ONLY THE VAST CONCEPT OF NOTHING.
TIME DOES NOT EXIST.
this escalated quickly
making up your own fictional universe
creating an entire history for it
creating characters who have complex back stories
RESEARCHING NAMES WITH MEANINGS THAT CORRESPOND TO THE HISTORY AND UNIVERSE AND BACK STORIES YOU’VE COME UP WITH
then never writing or doing anything with it at all ever
Or no one ever cares about it
Welcome to my life.