Wednesday, May 12, 2004

The Rock

Umlaut spent the night on Alcatraz "for work". To make a long story short, a group from my company had to visit The Rock after hours to do maintenance work on equipment we have there. After 5 hours of fairly draining work we had the rest of the night / morning to roam pretty much wherever we wanted. A Park Service employee also gave us a pretty cool tour.

Twas pretty amazing. We spent 2+ hours wandering the nooks and crannies of The Rock, including several areas that are off limits to the public for various reasons. Plus, it was crazy being alone on Alcatraz without any tourists. Spooky 'N Special. Attached are a few of my favorite pics:

Me-Sick: The operating table in the Operating Room of the Hospital. The room has no lights so it was pitch black (hence the shot being off center). Only the moonlight coming through the windows reflected off the cold stainless steel of the operating table.....

Hospital-Sleeping: The sleeping arrangement some of my co-workers and I had in the Hospital area. We could have slept in the cells, but the Hospital was more hardcore. The Hospital has been off limits to the public since 1991 and is considered the most "paranormally active" area of the prison. The Park Service supplied the foam mattresses under our sleeping bags. As we were putting the mats down I suggested we lay them in the shape of a pentagram. Nervous laughter ensued.

Indian-Graffiti: Graffiti in the prison chapel painted during the 1969-71 Native American occupation of the island. REDRUM! The chapel is off limits to the public.

Main-Street: The main cell block at around 2:00am in the morning. EMPTY. QUIET. The only noise was that of a ventilation fan. The highlight of my night on The Rock was answering the call of nature at around 4:00am. The only bathroom is the public one that's located OUTSIDE of the prison building. This meant walking through the Hospital, down a hallway, past the Psych Ward, past the Operating Room, past the Pharmacy (considered THE single most haunted room in the prison), down some stairs, through the kitchen (where most of the prison's violence happened), walking the entire length of the cell block down Main Street, then outside. Aside from the cell block there were only a few lights on anywhere else (I had a flashlight). Going out wasn't so bad since I was literally headed towards the light (the dim lighting of the cell block stays on overnight). However, the return trek was trippy since I was headed back towards darkness, especially when I reached the Hospital area. Twas better than any Metal song I've ever listened to..

Pretty much wherever you go you hear the screeching of seagulls and other birds that live on the island and around the prison buildings. If you're in the right state of mind they sound like people screaming. Hee Hee. In the morning we walked out onto the large courtyard in front of the Administration Building to drink our coffee and take in the view of The City and S.F. Bay. We were greeted by the sight of two seagulls f*cking. Don't drop the soap!!

A pretty amazing experience. The icing on the cake was that the weather was PERFECT during the night and in the morning. Absolutely no wind and crystal clear conditions. The view of San Francisco from The Rock was absolutely STUNNING (especially at night).

When you next see me and I have the tear drop tattoo under my eye you'll know why.

No remorse,
"Pretty Boy" Umlaut