Vacant New Jersey

Photostream » January 2018 » Park River Sewer


I could feel her gaining speed, but the blackness swallowed me whole. Haphazardly I floated ahead like a twig caught in a turbulent river eddy. To make things worse, a thick veil of dense fog appeared, acting like a mirror, refracting and reflecting back the narrow beam of light illuminating out from the flashlight I had hastily duck-taped to the bow of my vessel. I had to ride her blind, it was my only choice, that or bail out and float like a buoyant turd bobbing down the unknown murky water. And so I held on, using my paddles to steer her as best as I could, fighting as the current dragged me deeper and deeper into the seemingly endless pit of water and darkness. I could no longer tell up from down, left from right; just floating in space, I might as well have been. Every sound around me morphed into a ghostly echo, which reverberated through the darkend cement catacomb that was sucking me faster and faster into the blinding blackness, a blackhole. An occasional cool splash of sewer water kicked up from my paddles, licked my face, as the momentum of the water pulled me further. My only sense was that I was flowing downhill and gaining speed, quickly. At the mercy of the current I just let myself get taken, swept away. I tried to enjoy the ride, forget about the fact the my life vest was in my car parked miles away, that no-one would find me down here dozens of feet underground in some sewer outflow tunnel. My only hope was that I'd probably be skinny enough to fit through the debris gate at the exit of the tunnel, if I even made it that far alive.

After a few minutes, I noticed the temperature began to shift, the humidity died as the air turned cold and dry, and in a instant the fog lifted and the beam from my flashlight began to illuminate the alien world surrounding me. I was encapsulated within a cement tunnel bored deep beneath the city of Hartford, Connecticut a tunnel that routed the Park River underneath the city. Massive piles of random debris poked out of the river like icebergs of garbage. Than "SMASH" I could feel her come to a near complete stop as her hull nearly became slit over a large piece of unidentifiable jagged metal rising out from the water. I was lodged, but the current building up behind me spun me around and shot me back out into the moving water. In the chaos of spinning and turning my flashlight beam illuminated the hulking ruins of a rusted-out half sunken car flipped onto its side. Meandering through the mind field of garbage obstacles I noticed the current began to slow and I had to paddle to continue with a forward motions. In this exertion of energy, I noticed that the cement ceiling above was covered with this green slimy algae. It looked like thick gooey snot spewed from the clogged nasal passage of a congested whale. I flinched at the idea of even touching it, which would not have been a problem except for the fact that the water was so deep now that I was just mere inches beneath the horrifying goo and if the water rose any higher my hair would certainly be mopping it. And with such a realization of rising waters my worst fear began to play about my mind. I began to panic that the outflow of the tunnel was fully submerged at the exit which could only mean a definite drowning end-game for me. It was in that moment that my kayak became a coffin and I could only hope to see a light at the end of the tunnel...