The Grey Journal

under construction

Entry #3: Abandoned House no. 1

april 19, 2020

    The first abandoned house is hidden from the street. If you look closely, you can see a path heading into the woods. Follow it, duck beneath the spiderwebs, and you'll see the shape of something rotted and empty looming through the foliage.

    I haven't taken many pictures of this house, which is odd, because I visit it much more than the other one. I'll have to describe the place from memory. Standing in the clearing, there is an old, twisted black walnut tree. If you walk ahead, past the house, there is an old well - I'm certain it was there a year ago, but these days I can never quite find it. Perhaps it sunk into the soggy ground, or perhaps it was never there to begin with. Back to the house. The front porch is made of concrete, which is not nearly as immune to rotting decay as you might expect it to be, and if you dare to stand underneath the unstable rafters of the porch, you can smell musty, moldy air wafting from inside. Though I have never stepped inside, for the floor...isn't and the place is a jumbled mess, my sibling reports that they have difficulty breathing when exploring the interior. I'm not sure how they manage it: decaying furniture and left-behind things pile in odd places across what used to be the floor, and I don't think there's anywhere you could really stand. The mess of the inside is what really spooks me: it implies that whoever last lived there stopped abruptly without taking any of their things, including moldy cursed stuffed animals and a child's homework papers from the 1980s. Yet someone lives there today: a vulture and her two chicks, who decided that the house made a great shelter. The building has massive, gaping holes in the roof, plenty sized to allow a mother vulture to swoop inside. It's comforting to know that someone likes the place...even if it's vultures.

    Later: the tale of Leonardo, the cursed stuffed animal from this very place. But for now, end log.

Entry #2: Abandoned House no. 2

april 6, 2020

    Today I took a trip out to the second abandoned house. I call it the second because, walking up the road from my house, there are two abandoned houses along the road, and it's the second one you encounter. Like the other house, it's invisible from the street. All you can see is the rough outline of a trail leading into the woods. Follow this trail, and you'll walk into a clearing where you can see a mass of of plants gathered around a structure that, if you look at it right, seems to be a brick house. Walking around it, one can make out the back porch - it's the most visible part of the house.

    The porch is more or less intact, being made of concrete, although branches and trash litter the ground. I spotted shards of a broken mirror scattered on the concrete, which feels a bit auspicious. Even so, this place feels much less haunted than the first abandoned house. I walked up the steps to where the back door used to be and snapped a picture of the inside of the place.

    It's quite a mess. It looks like the house was cleared of objects and furniture before it was allowed to decay to such a state, but even so, the "ground" is so uneven and rotten I wouldn't dare step inside. A breeze wafted a musty, almost moldy smell into my sinuses and I hurriedly stepped away. I don't know what species of mold grow here, but I'd rather not inhale them. I warily proceeded to the front porch, which is merely a narrow strip of concrete with a sheet of wood fallen on it, and took a few pictures of the inside of the house through a broken window. I avoided the front door.

    While the house itself instills a sense of architectural danger, the area around is full of life, growing over cracked asphalt and piles of shingles. Huge thistles sprout everywhere, and the place is full of insects - butterflies, dragonflies, bumblebees, and all the annoying little things that want to bite me. It's beautiful, in an inconvenient sort of way, and I just found a tick crawling on my arm as I write this. But I have nothing against the plants. Those trees sure are growing fast.

    I have to trek through bushes and around trees to get back to the road, where I pick up the bundle of huge zip-ties I found scattered all over the road and claimed by the sacred laws of Finders Keepers. I incur no debt and owe no favor, as the roads belong to Man and not to the Woods. I have no idea what I'm going to do with this many giant zip-ties, but I'm sure it'll be cool.

End log.

Entry #1: Introduction

april 6, 2020

    Some days I feel like I live on the set of a horror movie. This place is weird. Not that I definitively believe in the supernatural, but this place is cursed. Haunted. Spooky. There's a nameless graveyard a five minutes' walk up the road. The way the ground dips makes the place invisible from the road, and unless you follow the remains of a gravel path, you would never realize it was there. Up the other road, two houses stand abandoned and rotting, their roofs caved in and their floors practically nonexistent. Vultures circle overhead. Dogs act weird around certain areas, although I don't know much about dogs so that might not mean anything. The woods are dense and foreboding, littered with trash, tires, and rusting machinery, dragged out and dumped by the locals, I assume. I'm always unsettled walking through the forest because it feels inherently hostile, as if it knows I Do Not Belong.

    As such, I've elected to start keeping a formal record of any interesting things and occurences around here. While I attempted to keep such a log in my field journal, I found that I often forgot to make entries, and even when I did, my atrocious handwriting and inability to glue photographs into the journal (blame the printer) made my entries somewhat lacking. Still, I may be able to make use the sparse notes from the journal in my records.

    See you soon. End log.