I spent this past Saturday in the middle of nowhere, traipsing through knee high weeds in the wide open fields of Clyde, Idaho. I am not joking when I say Clyde is smack dab in the middle of nowhere. Here are shots of all four directions at the exact spot my GPS lady (with her sophisticated English accent) told me I was “arriving at destination”, Clyde, Idaho.. I thought it was so funny I just had to stop and document it, ’cause I’m quirky that way. If you look carefully, there is one house in one direction.
You may be wondering how I found myself in such a hip and happening place. Well, I went to Idaho with my husband for a family gathering to have a memorial service to dedicate a grave for an ancestor, Aaron Henry Williams, who was shot and killed by a disgruntled ranch hand in 1913. He was buried in grave with no headstone in a tiny family cemetery in the middle of a field on the family plot of land, and my sweet mother-in-law and her brother collected donations to purchase headstones for Aaron, his wife and his two children, who were also buried there.
What does all of this have to do with a bomb shelter? We had about 45 minutes to kill before the service, so we went out to explore the land, nature lovers that we are. This is what we stumbled upon.
Now I don’t know about you, but when I see something bizarre like this, a little voice starts shouting inside my head…Kate, there’s an adventure here just calling your name. Kate … Kate … KATE, can you hear me?
So we (my husband, 2 nephews, a niece and a brother-in-law) got up close and personal to get a better look at the rocky mound with the strange boarded up opening and red tarp.
Here’s where my internal tug-of-war began. I really wanted to go down that ladder to have an adventure and explore, but on the other hand my logical mom-self was telling me what she would tell my children…Don’t you dare go down that ladder into that hole in the earth. It’ll collapse on you when you get inside, and you’ll be buried alive and die a slow and painful death of suffocation. So I made a compromise between my adventurous-self and my mom-self…I said to my group, “Hmmm, I wonder what it’s like down there. Wouldn’t that be cool to go inside and look around. I’d go down if somebody was brave enough to go first.”
Heehee, I knew that’s all it would take to get someone male to play the role of big brave explorer, and sure enough, within one minute brother-in-law was climbing through the wood and down that ladder, while his wife was screaming, “Don’t you dare go down there!” Sorry sister-in-law, I had to do it.
Once I saw that the ladder was secure and the walls and ceiling weren’t going to cave in, I headed down, along with the rest of the group. It was immediately apparent that this was either a really elaborate time-out room or a bomb shelter. After much debate between teen-agers and adults, AND the offer to let the teens test out the time-out room theory, we decided on the bomb shelter option. How cool is that?! I was standing in a bomb shelter in the middle of nowhere in Idaho.Could there be any safer place in the whole world? I mean really, how high could the uninhabited fields of Idaho be on the nuclear target list in the first place?
Want to know more about bomb shelters? Check out this video clip from the documentary, Buried in the Backyard: a documentary about bomb shelters and the people who build them.
Also, the history of bomb shelters
And how to build a bomb shelter…Bomb shelter guide
Okay, now go and have your own adventure, I dare you!
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