Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Winchester House of Mystery!

First off allow me to state that I know I am no looker. More women than you can shake a stick at have rejected me. Why I bring this up will become clear later.

Moving on.

When we pulled up to the Winchester Mystery House, I was not impressed. This was to set the theme for the entire day. Maybe the whole deal had been built up to much in my head. Maybe its just not that freakin’ great. I dunno. But the first thing I remember when we pulled up was thinking “Huh, thought it’d be bigger.”

The first thing you get to see is the Winchester Mystery Gift Shop. That’s not what they call, but it was funny when I thought it in my head, so that what I’m calling it. Deal with it. Mediocre things, the usual gift shop stuff: Postcards, pencils, pens, necklaces with names on them. You know the drill.

Moving on.

The next place you go is passed a shady garden. More on that later. Passed the shady garden, is a large doorway designed for carriages. It is here you learn that there re 160 rooms, 4 stories, and only one shower, all built for a women that stood 4’10”, and who made 1,000 dollars a day for, essentially, marrying the right guy.

Then you walk through her house and see all the crazy things she did. It all felt very fake to me, because for being a hundred-year-old house, everything seemed so new. Fresh paint, clean floors, well-tended gardens. I’m sure that this is all done in an effort to preserve the place, but instead it gives it a “Disneyland” feel, which left me disappointed.

They lead you through 110 of the 160 rooms, tell you little stories about each room, legend, myths, and rumors surrounding a certain door or window. And it about an hour, you cover a little over a mile by foot, and then you are back into the shady gardens.

From here you take a “Behind-the-scenes” tour, which is really a second tour that takes you through the stuff you missed the first time around. There is a lot of outside walking, and you get to see the basement, which was the only part of the tour I really enjoyed because the basement what the only part that felt genuinely old, like it had some real history in it somewhere. And in no time at all, the second tour is over, and you are left to wander the grounds mostly at your whim.

A few high points included some the well-known architectural oddities, such as the staircase leading into the ceiling and the door to know where. She also had a massive vault containing nothing except a lock of her daughter’s hair, a lock of her husband’s hair, and their obituaries.

Overall it was a pleasant tour, although I know that from reading this you might not think so, and if you are in the area with thirty or so bucks to blow, then the Winchester Mystery House is a gooda place as any to do it.

Moving on.

To be honest it was really the people on the tour with me that reduced me enjoyment. This happens to me a lot because I don’t enjoy small groups of strangers. I can handle crowds, but in groups of say, thirty or less, I begin to feel very uncomfortable, especially if it’s a small group of children. Kids make me very, very nervous.

So I’m uncomfortable with this group of ass holes on a mediocre tour through a grand, if a little over-done, house, and if that’s not bad enough, there is not one good-looking person in the bunch, my family included. About 15 ugly-as-sin jerks gawking at the product of too much money mixed with too much crazy. And the strangest part was, some of these fuckers had kids! One woman with thin, stringy, greasy hair, thick glasses, a down-turned nose and no chin, on top of a Mickey Mouse t-shirt with a gray zip-up hoodie, purple shorts which accentuated her numerous varicose veins, had three little beasts that looked just like her following her around like baby ducks. And not only did I have to look at these ogres, but sometimes they would open their maws and spew forth such gems within earshot of other sentient beings:

“This is great and all, but I was really hoping we could see where he lived.”

She only died in this house, after being confined to the top stories by crippling arthritis.

“Was she crazy or something?”

The tour guide said that she took the advice of an east-coast psychic who told her that if she kept building her house she would never die. So I’m going to say no, she wasn’t crazy at all.

“Boy, was she spoiled!”

Ya think? 1,000 dollars a day income, 20 million inherited, after being wealthy her whole damn life? Yeah, nimrod, the bitch was spoiled.
There was a really cool Winchester rifle museum on site, which I enjoyed immensely. As a matter of fact, it was the best part of the whole tour.


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