Good Morning Gentle Readers,
Do-good laws often have odd, perverse, and unintended effects on the real world. Typically, the one-size-fits-all approach is less than optimal. On occasion the outcome is just silly and smile-inducing.
Essex is one of several modern day Ghost Towns on old Route 66 and it still boasts a postal facility.
Please note the severity of the parking problem here and the vital importance of ensuring plenty of convenient parking for the
handicapped handicapable. I didn't count the number of mail boxes, but that's all there is folks, the entire population of Greater Metropolitan Essex is about 87.
Not sure what happened to the red lettered sign that used to hang on the front of the post office. Guess it vanished when they installed the boxes out front.
That Boy, Jacob, about had heart failure. Had his nose pressed against the glass, hands cupped to cut the late afternoon desert sun's glare, when a fair sized scorpion scrambled up and over the top of an ancient cracked leather boot standing upright in the debris. Careful son, the snakes crawl in under that foundation to get out of the mid-day heat.
Jack Rittenhouse, author of the 1946 Guidebook to Route 66, described Essex as a small Mojave Desert community that chiefly served the needs of the tourists. Essex once provided towing services, gas stations, markets and cafes to the Route 66 traveler. It also had a free drinking fountain in the desert. About a hundred feet from the old market you can find the water well off by the side of the road. It is a cute little stone well that has a shake shingle roof and looks a lot like a classic old wishing well. The water has long been turned off, and the plumbing stripped of its fixtures, but it still stands in silent testimony to the days when it was the source of free water in the desert. In those days gas stations charged 10 cents for a glass of drinking water or 10 cents for a gallon of radiator water. What would you have bought? Thanks to the Automobile Club of Southern California, who put the drinking fountain in, that wasn't an issue anymore for the Route 66 traveler. This little well was a very popular place on those hot summer days so long ago.
Just for the record, that would be about seventy five cents a gallon in today's world.
Come over here. Try and imagine AAA trying to offer free well water to thirsty travelers in the modern world.
After they gave up and shredded the two inch high stack of
government application forms, the public clamor would rise. Later,
after years of environmental impact studies and hundreds of thousands
of dollars spent on consultants who drive MBZ's and live in Zooport
Beach, the cost would exceed the projections by a factor of four.
A decade later the well would be installed in a building with marginally functioning air conditioning, covered with gang graffiti, littered with trash, used condoms, and empty beer cans (think: desert rest stops on I-10) because nobody would think to hose the place out once in a while.
All that wouldn't matter though, because the road alignment changed
two years before the project began. Despite that, they built it anyway.
Whole thing here.