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Archive for October, 2007

Yesterday, I took some shots and ran into a family friend who also lived in the area. His house was the second to last on the north side to be bought out, and he moved just a couple weeks ago. He too was back visiting. We had a conversation about the house I was in process of photographing, one which was shredded on the outside. He explained to me that it wasn’t vandals looking for scrap metal (which was my suspicion) but, rather the asbestos removal crew. Apparently, they used to be more discrete in their work… now that nobody cares, they are able to rip in. During our brief conversation, we saw the same airport cop drive by twice. At the second passing, I asked Mike if he has seen them before. “Nah, I guess the guy is just lost. Can’t figure out where the airport is. Maybe I should tell him to follow the planes coming in, but this is more fun to watch.” Mike’s lighthearted comment didn’t detract from my suspicion that this is their area to patrol now.

And today, I got confirmation that it is true- the area is no longer within Bridgeton’s boundaries. Its the airport’s to patrol, out of the hands of the city of Bridgeton.

There wasn’t much to photograph yesterday. Nothing has happened to the area since last weekend, so I just took some interesting artsy shots, had my random conversation with Mike and left. This morning I had a strange idea for an art project. (more…)

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From these standing 56, there are three houses left that I suspected as being occupied… and yesterday one of them held a garage sale. Today in front of that little yellow house remains a pile of forgotten furniture and broken fitness equipment. Rising among the stacked debris is a mattress declaring “Free Stuff” in red spray paint. I had previously avoided photographing this house and the other two remaining houses on their block while they lived there. They deserve their privacy against us onlookers who drive by and stare at the curiosity of the area now.

I guess its true… I am now just an onlooker. I can’t really call the place home anymore. Despite the fact that I still remember every street name, even those whose nameplates have been stolen years ago, it only barely resembles home. And, I fear none of it will be accessible for much longer. Today, I witnessed the first sign that the airport is moving in on our side of Carrollton, in the form of the Airport Police patrol car. While photographing the aforementioned home, I saw a cop head up the road. No problem, Bridgeton cops have witnessed my documenting habit for over a year now and have been cool with me standing around the derelict houses. Yet, this time it was not one of the local cops. I was shocked to see the airport logo on this patrol car. The officer slowed down as he approached and deeply glared at me. (more…)

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