Sunday, July 7, 2013

Day one: Preston Castle

The morning of my birthday started at 3am when Henry woke me up by screaming about something that happened on Deadliest Catch. He got me a bad ass new lap top (my old one runs on Vista) so all was forgiven.

We had plans to leave the house by 6am. Preston castle was almost 4 hours away and we wanted to arrive in time for the 10 am tour.
At 6:10 I waited in the car while Henry made his 3rd trip into the house for something he forgot. I wanted to bring Dr. Pickles with us. I miss her so much already.

Either google maps was wrong, or Henry drove like a demon released from hell. We arrived at the castle in the town of Ione around 9 am.

Not much to do here. Tried checking in early at the lone hotel in town. Even overcame my anxiety enough to ring the bell at the front desk, but no one appeared.

Decided to walk around a bit. We were meeting our friends Chuck and Amanda at the castle, but they had over slept and would be late.

So we walked over to the strip mall in town which consisted of an ace hardware, a grocery store, a subway, and a manicure place. The grocery store smelled weird to me, like Whole Foods weird. That creepy health store smell that's like garlic to a vampire to me. I had a fit when I saw this end cap of mayonnaise.

Seriously, wtf? Chuck later said that the town residents must use it for sun screen.

Went to ace hardware so Henry could use the bathroom. I lingered by the chainsaws trying not to look suspicious.

It was getting closer to ten so we headed back up to the castle. Henry took the "visitors" road instead of the road to the castle, which I needled him about endlessly until I noticed that the gravel road ended at a closed youth authority building. He almost ran over a squirrel and there were 4 vultures posted in the fence like they were waiting for us to die.

You could see the castle from the parking lot.

We headed back up that way and waited for Chuck and Amanda. Mostly I hated everyone that was parking behind us, but Henry hated the car in front of us that belonged to some hipsters that we had seen ogling us in town.

Finally Chuck and Amanda arrived. And we headed in to start the tour.

Preston Castle was a "school of industry" built in the 1890's to house youthful offenders who had previously been kept at San Quentin or Folsom prison.

Our guide was an ancient old man who had actually done some time there in the 50's. I was dismayed to learn that the tiny faced girl in short shorts and her husband that I hated as soon as they parked behind us would be in our tour group. They were amateur ghost hunters and had already seen some show about the castle. I spent most of the time being annoyed at them and their constant photography of anything "creepy"
Which probably included us.

I didn't really notice anything scary or creepy about the place. Except for the potential to fall through the floor at any moment.

Lots of empty rooms with single chairs.

The infirmary was the most interesting. The only room that had been freshly painted. And it had 3 wheelchairs.

According to our guide this was where ghost hunters picked up on ghostly vibes. Me, not so much. I did feel slightly dizzy like the floor was moving in one of the apartments, but it probably really was.
In the kitchen area, a murder of a kitchen worker had taken place in the pantry and a little shrine was set up.

After the tour we walked really far away to smoke like delinquents.

Everyone was hungry so we headed back to town to eat the diner where everyone's food was terrible. Much to my dismay, tiny face and her husband from the tour were already at the restaurant. Henry managed to get a picture of them surreptitiously.

God I hated them so much!!!

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  1. I want to go on a trip with you. TAKE ME WITH YOu.

  2. I really, really, really love your hair!

    Preston Castle looks so cool. I never feel any ghostly vibes anytime I take a tour of a supposedly haunted place, except for that haunted school, but that was a private thing in the middle of the night with that Jimmy Wenger fool-- totally scary for a myriad of non-ghost reason!

    It seems like a great birthday!!

  3. Awwww thanks! <3. Henry's been pointing out my terrible bed head this whole trip. Lol
    Preston castle was totally worth the trip. Having a guide that had been "a student" there made it even more interesting. Chuck finally asked what he was in for : car theft and "other things"