in rural Paris, Iowa, and Wordpress

Abandoned

It can be no secret here that one of my favorite things to do is tramp through Spanish colonial ruins, which are in abundant supply in this area of the central plateau. I usually do this alone. Few others wish to stay at it as long as I do.

But there is also another category of “ruins” available everywhere, contemporary “ruins” in the form of incomplete and abandoned real estate development projects. I am well familiar with real estate projects gone sour. However, in the north they tend to go sour at a much earlier stage. In my part of Mexico one repeatedly encounters residential or commercial real estate improvements that reached an advanced stage of completion and were then simply abandoned for whatever reason.

These are some snapshots of one of the more spectacular examples of what I am speaking about. These photos are of a church abandoned before it was completed. They were taken on 17 May 2010 at very low resolution when I did not know any better. I had a card of such low capacity in the small camera–the only one I owned at the time–that it would not have made any difference if I had known better. This is a view of one of the wings of that church.

This church is situated on a relatively remote site outside of town near the reservoir. One has to know how to get there. I encountered it on a trail bike ride a little less than a year after my arrival. The project has therefore been abandoned for at least two years.

It is an extraordinarily elaborate structure. Walking through the interior is an experience.

There is a reason that I wished to orient you. When I first hauled Michel out there in the pickup truck last 8 June, he immediately set to work with his camera. His photomerge of three shots taken inside the wing that extends to the left in the picture below is stunning. You can see that photomerge at his blog by clicking here.

[Later Addendum: Please also see Michel’s truly amazing later photographs of this structure by clicking here.]

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