Tragic Murders in Heavenly Setting
My favorite relaxing area, Michaux Forest, has had its shares of gruesome happenings. One of the hikes is actually called Dead Woman Hollow after a long ago snakebite victim.
Nearer to our time, the forest was where three smothered little girls were found in 1934, wrapped in a blanket. The girls were killed by their father, Elmo Noakes and his niece, Winifred Pierce. Noakes later killed Pierce and himself in a murder-suicide. It is believed that Elmo Noakes suffocated his children because he did not want to see them starve.
In 1988, "my" forest was the location for a horrible hate crime: two lesbians were stalked and attacked by a monstrous "local." One died and the other, Claudia Brenner, had to walk four miles, severely wounded, for rescue. After her recovery, she went on to write "Eight Bullets: One Woman's Story of Surviving Anti-Gay Violence."
Finally, do NOT go hiking during deer season (which starts on the Monday after Thanksgiving). The bullets are literally flying, and inebriated hunters regularly shoot each other. I don't even want to THINK about archery season, which is very popular here as well!
- Road Trip
Sprawl and Pollution
Figures are often brandished that 12% of the US GDP transits through Carlisle, either on the Turnpike or on I-81. As a consequence, huge warehouses surround the town. The warehouses are partially hidden by so-called "linear parks," which are pathetic hillocks with lawn and a couple of trees.
The air often feels dirty: an unwholesome smell like doughnuts (but not as nice) often hovers. The light pollution is also very severe: Carlisle glows in the dark, and you seldom can distinguish the stars clearly.
- Road Trip
Where I-81 meets the PA Turnpike
Interstate 81 is like a "bad heart" for Carlisle: we wouldn't go very far without it, yet we are always aware of its presence.
Our loveliest park, for instance, has a beautiful nature trail which can only be fully enjoyed by the hearing-impaired.
When Governor Ridge lifted the speed limit on state freeways to 65, there ensued some ghastly crashes around Carlisle. Now, there is a so-called "Safety Corridor" on I-81 around town, with the speed limit set at 55.
Regularly, I-81 gets closed by a wreck, and the whole traffic has to be rerouted through the town. Not a pretty sight or a pretty sound.
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