Saturday, July 14, 2007

Call This A Little Background

I come from a place that had ceased to exist before I was born there.

Ableman, WI was across the mighty Baraboo river from Rock Springs. At one time the area was lively with quarrying pink quartzite for the C&NW. You can still see evidence of the Pink Lady Quarry along railbeds throughout the Midwest if you know what color to look for.

Now there's not much left of Ableman. The photographer's shop is gone. Most of the houses are on the Rock Springs side of the river. Action at the quarry is on a low cycle again. The cemetery doesn't even see as much activity as it used to. The Hinckley Springs trucks leave twice a day hauling the water away from the artesian wellhead to Chicago to be sold 5 gallons at a time. I remember drinking straight from a small standpipe on that well, the water so cold and sweet it made your jaws ache.

So, that's it. Nowhere near normal or Normal, as you wish. Just a little town that's gone now, sucked into the hubbub of a larger city of 425.

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