Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Lone Phone Booth

I thought it would be fun to share something that caught my imagination recently. Last night my husband was telling me about a story he read. I have to give you a bit of background, Mr. D is not a big reader. In fact I didn’t see him voluntarily pick up a book until his early thirties. (I’m a voracious reader and like to think I rubbed off on him after all this time) So, when he starts talking about something he read, it always catches my attention. LOLThis time, he told me about a telephone booth that was literally in the middle of nowhere.

Out in the vastness of the Mojave Desert, at the end of an incredibly long line of telephone poles, sat a lonesome phone booth.

Placed there just after WWII, it was meant to be a means of communication with a nearby cinder mine. One day the phone number got out and people started calling to see who would answer. Someone placed a logbook in the booth and everyone who called and who answered would write it down.

Eventually, this lonesome phone booth became such a tourist attraction that Pac Bell had it removed at the request of the National Park Service. The booth was located in a part of the new Mojave National Preserve. All the increased traffic and campouts in the area had a negative impact on the desert environment.

I’m not certain what it is about this story caught my attention but I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Thanks to the internet, I had tons of information at my fingertips. There even is a website dedicated to the Mojave Phone Booth. A warning, it’s a time suck. LOL, I spent forever reading about this when I should have been writing.

Oh and for the extra curious… The phone's number, which may ring somewhere now, but not in the Mojave, was 760-733-9969. I feel sorry for the poor soul who ended up with this number, who knows where they get calls from.

For me, I found it fascinating and it triggered my imagination in a big way. I can’t be the only one. Feel free to write in the comments what you came up with. Here’s a start for you….Imagine you are the one who phoned this number over and over and finally one day someone answered…Who picked up the phone and why are they there?
I’m looking forward to reading what you come up with. :)

1 comment:

RDJudesie said...

Okay, first, I just posted a whole comment and it messed up, so that ticks me off right there... >_<

I was contacted and interviewed by NBC national news years ago when this first became a quirky little news story years ago. People used to call from all over the world just to see who would answer; I have called it on several occasions just to see if anyone was out there at the time. Sometimes it was busy for a long time; once I called at midnight and got a mom, her son, and a few of their friends who were camping out at the phone booth just to answer it. It was really cool; people would come from all over & leave stuff as a little shrine. It sucks that the parks department decided it was interfering with the "ecology" of the desert; I've driven by that phone on the way to Vegas many times, and there's NOTHING out there to be disturbed. Just more government B.S. It was sad when they took it out, because it was just a nice little thing that sat out there and kind of brought a quirky little bit of happiness to people, just knowing it was out there. The phone number no longer works either; it didn't years ago when it was removed and hasn't since. I miss it, but it was really cool while it lasted. :)