I had just packed my camera, and was headed towards Medina to meet with someone for the first time having absolutely no clue what to do or where to go, but that is all in the fun, right?
A former tractor supply company left behind to be washed away by the passing of time. Tucked back behind brush and surrounded on all sides by fence, this location was a hidden gem residing off the busy streets of a town.
Our adventure took place nearing the end of the summer of 2013. Climbing over the fence brought us to a large barn where we found hundreds of metal and wooden wheels scattered throughout. As the sun shone itself through broken windows, we stopped to admire the soft glow of the evening illuminating the barn, just as lightly as it was.
We continued forward from the barn, finding ourselves stepping directly into a junk yard of sorts. A delivery truck from the 50’s sat in front of us upon exiting the barn, sinking into the ground as time went by. As vines wrapped themselves into a tangle through windows, the tireless vehicle sat quiet and still.
Tractors from numerous time periods sat through the property every way you turned your head, collecting dust, rust, and the occasional alley cat using them for protection from the rain, or a midday nap.
Various machinery, tools, and vehicles were now being consumed by the surroundings. Even a decently recent PT Cruiser sat untouched for some years, grass now starting to grow past the bumper as the Earth sucked the tires in.
Finally approaching the front of the property nearest to the street, we arrived at a large house. The foundation was crumbling. We were able to slip under the house into the basement, where we found a falling set of stairs leading to the inside. As we reached the top I jiggled the door to gain entrance. It was then that we realized the ceiling and door frame were bowed, making it seemingly impossible to swing the door open. With a little bit of a push, and some determination to see what was inside, a few minutes later, we found ourselves standing in the middle of a kitchen atop the knee-high debris left behind by hoarders.
Letters, still unopened were littered across the top of a desk in what seemed to be the main office for past customers, as well as a lamp sat neatly near the desks edge…I wonder if the light bulb still has any life?…
Everywhere you turned to walk in this house, it was impossible to avoid piles of objects across every inch of floor, until we reached the stairs taking us to the second story. However, now our obstacle was a different one…we had to find a way to walk on walls in order to avoid stepping in piles of raccoon feces piles nearly ankle-high.
A board conveniently sat atop the stairwell leaned in such a way that we were able to take a hold of a hand railing and shimmy our way over the raccoon section, dropping us directly into a once again completely crowded hallway.
Okay, so there was one flat section that made it…slightly easy to stand.
Peering into a room at the end of the hall, I could see what looked to be an old tea or coffee pot, covered in dust and cobwebs, seemingly untouched for a decade or more. As I pushed forth to photograph this subject I could hear the tapping and scratching of the small feet and claws of our raccoon friends inside the houses walls. Once I had reached the end of the hallway, I noticed something strange about this room…It was filled with clocks!
‘How strange is this?’ I thought to myself. I had never seen a room full of clocks, but only the occasional room full of 40’s…but that is Cleveland in a nutshell, and we are far from Cleveland now.
Passing back through the hall, I decided to make a stop at the lovely bathroom. The summer heat had created an awful smell from what I thought to be maybe a dead animal, but upon entrance I realized that my assumption was very far off from the truth. The sink had been filled to the brim with even more feces…These raccoons really loved to party hard. And who the hell put a chair in the bath tub?
Before exiting, we had one more room to check.
Pushing ourselves through the small opening of a glass door barricaded behind shelves, tables and garbage we eventually made our way in. This final room ended up being a bedroom. The metal bed frame remained intact, and of course even more debris had been scattered across the floor.
As we stood quiet, listening to the “tap, tap, tap-tap-tap” of raccoon feet, I noticed something behind my girlfriends head, poking itself from a hole in the ceiling. Behold! It was our little raccoon friends paying us a small visit, watching us like little living security cameras, poking their heads out and probably wondering who the hell we are, or maybe even WHAT we are having probably not seen much human interaction in their years of life within these walls.
We made our way back towards the basement door, the raccoons following us to each hole they had made and watching us as we left.