I sometimes wonder if I am cracked. It almost feels like places are speaking to me. Not every place, but ones with a history. But not what most people would think of as historical.
An abandoned factory, for instance, seems to resonate with past events. Just imagine the stories it could tell. Peoples’ blood, sweat and tears seem to impregnate those walls. Whereas, when I enter a church it seems like the emptiest of shells.
Today, I am exploring the former. A factory, abandoned for how long? I love exploring places like this. As soon as I enter, it feels like there is history here. This place is amazing.
The windows are almost all destroyed. Cracked and dirty, but allowing the occasional shaft of sunlight to illuminate the dust that hangs in the air.
The roof seems to be the home to every flying rat from within the nearest few miles. So, of course, the floor is covered with a fair amount of their history; as well as what was left behind when the factory closed.
But it is the machines that draw me in. I can feel the past here. How many hours did men spend standing at these beasts of the industrial age? Men who knew no other life, perhaps had no other option. But, perhaps, were happy with their lot; or perhaps not.
This space is cavernous and, in early winter, the air is cold and bites the lungs. But the sky is clear and has that deep blue which makes the world a brighter place.
It is so silent here now. But, once, there would have been a tumult; day in, day out. I can almost hear it now. No, I can here it now. I tell myself it is just my imagination, but I swear I can hear it.
The incessant repetition, as machines hammer and bend metal into shape. The shouts and calls of the workmen, struggling to make themselves heard. After a lifetime in this place, the silence of nature must have been terrifying.
If it is my imagination, it is so vivid at times, it feels so real. But I am not a believer of superstitions. There are no ghosts here, only memories.
But then there is another feeling, one of loss. I know men would have died here. Without knowing it for a fact, it would have happened. Lives lost, families torn apart. Their pain, their loss, still echoing through time.
© Neil Hayes and neilhayeswriter